Handling Stress

This essay has a total of 2087 words and 7 pages.

Handling Stress


Handling Stress

This essay is about handling the stress of University studies. We will be looking into
many ideas and different people¹s views on how to handle stress. I will also be giving my
own opinions on how I think stress can be controlled or relieved. The first thing we must
do is ask ourselves one very important question, ³what is stress²? WHAT IS STRESS?
According to an Australian born physician, Hans Selye (1979), stress is the nonspecific
response of the body to any demand made upon it. The body responds in many ways. One is to
the loss of blood and the other is to the lack of sleep. Both of these are nonspecific
responses, however all demands made on the body evoke generalised, nonspecific responses.
For example, they all unable you to concentrate as would normally be expected, they
activate one¹s sympathetic nervous system, and they also increase the amount of the
hormone epinephrine that is being released into your body. When people say they¹ve been
under going alot of stress they are usually referring to a couple of unpleasant
experiences. Now that we have an idea on what stress is the next question we should ask
ourselves is ³what is or can cause stress². CAUSES OF STRESS There are many different
things that cause stress. One may be if you have a big term paper due and you want to do
your best to impress your seminar leader. Another may be peer or family related. All in
all it is things, events, situations, and people that cause stress. It is how we perceive
them that will determine whether or not stress will be a result from the encounter. Not
only negative situations are the cause of stress. Joy and happiness can also cause stress
even though they are positive. In a sense, it is we then who choose our own stressors.
Selye noted that with the absence of stress there is death. Current researchers are also
discovering that too little stress may be a major cause of depression or boredom. It is
therefore up to us to choose the best Handling Stress # stressors and the optimal level of
stress. Since we have now begun to understand the definition of stress as well as the
causes we now ask ourselves ³what can I do to control my stress²? CONTROLLING STRESS
There have been many studies done on the managements of stress. One group of researchers
found out that many university students tended to gain weight their first year away from
home. These ³students stated they overate in response to the many life-style changes and
varying stresses of the university environment (Journal of College Student Personnel)².
This group of students were placed in stress management sessions. These sessions included
overall stress assessment, assertiveness training, time management, exploration of
stressful thoughts or belief systems, and life-style and stress reducers. The main focus
of these sessions were: a) how to manage stress by using things other than food and b) how
to apply stress management principles to the amount of food you take in. The majority of
these students found better ways to manage or control their stress by using more healthful
outlets, such as walking or taking up a sport. During the last twenty years disease
prevention and health promotion have been found to be related to the development of
healthy life-style behaviour and the management of stress. The course entitled ³
Psychology and the Management of Stress: Theory and Application² (Personnel and Guidance
Journal), has been set up to: a) acquaint students with theory and research related to
stress management techniques b) to provide guidance and information about diet, physical
exercise, and other matters of a healthy life-style and c) to provide an opportunity for
students to learn and practice how to apply stress management to their present lives. Each
Handling Stress # course is developed around four dimensions. Two of these are, ³the
influences of diet, physical exercise, and alcohol, drug, and cigarette use on stress and
physical health², and ³principles related to effective time management². These courses
have been proven to be highly effective. The stages in which the students are taught are
as follows: a) the students are asked to identify the stressors b) they are asked how they
experience and cope with them c) they are asked how they would like to manage them d) they
are then told more effective ways to manage their stressors e) they are asked whether it
was effective or not f) how they plan to continue to maintain their new behaviour and g)
habits they want to change. Most studies indicate that social support holds an impact on
stress. For example, in a 30-year longitudinal study of undergraduate college students,
Valliant (1974) found a significant and positive correlation between supportive family
environments and adult psychological adjustment in later life (Journal of College Student
Personnel). Social support is a good way to help the handling of stress for it is the
number of others that one can turn to. That available support system is a lean to for
people as they can get others to help in their management of stress. Another study was
done where eleven junior college students who received ³success-stress management²
training exhibited less stress and higher grade point averages than an equal number who
received ³success² group training (Journal of College Student Personnel). As well
multicomponent strategies employing cognitive restructuring and relaxation have been found
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