FOR the past three weeks, I have discussed the stress of different age groups, from students to parents, co-workers to church members, and even co-workers.
What I found out is that all of them are concerned with the issue of coping with stress.
Coping with the ordinary stress of life is one of the points on possessing proper mental health, according to the World Health Organization.
Having this thought, we can say that stress is a normal part of human endeavor and we can not live without it.
However, how can we say that the stress we are encountering is ordinary? When can we say that the stress we are dealing with is too much and makes our sanity at stake?
Stress is defined differently by different people. Hans Selye (1956), one of the first who studied it, says stress is more on the body’s response to non-specific demands. What is important to his theory is how the body responds to stressors.
In his studies, he has established that prolonged experience of strain may compromise the health of a person by weakening its immune system.
This is the foundation of other studies on the relationship of stress to other physical illnesses such as asthma, ulcer, and cancer. It is also important to know that the mind is experiencing trauma once the stress that a person receives is too heavy and too long. This mental trauma turned out to be a mental issue that needed medical attention.
Another pioneer of the stress study is Holmes and Rahe (1967). These authors focus on the kinds and volume of stressors that give “weights” to the person that can lead to sickness.
According to them, common life events give varied weights which can be calculated. The degree of stress that the person experiences can predict if this could lead to illness.
If you are clueless on what life events stress you, try to look at the “Life Change Units” on the net and answer it.
The idea of stress is proposed by Richard Lazarus (1984). Stress, according to Lazarus, is more of the person’s perception or evaluation of the stressors and his coping resources. One is experiencing stress if he perceives that the demands exceed the capacity of a person to cope.
There is a perceived imbalance that makes a person feel stress. In this idea of stress, it is important to know that one’s way of interpretation of life events matters. Seeing experiences as “tolerable” compared to a “tragedy” has a big difference even in feelings.
This makes sense since we can observe that with the same stressors two persons may react differently. In addition, personal resources for coping are important factors in assessing stress impact on the person.
Which of the about concept of stress can you identify with? How these studies help you understand your situation and can help you more in dealing with stress?
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