Responding to Stress Suppose that you are in your car in the middle of a traffic jam heading home from school after a terrible day. You feel frustrated and groan as you think about the calculus midterm you have tomorrow, which you still have to study for. Suddenly, you have to hit the brakes. Your heart starts beating faster and you insult the driver whom nearly made you crash. Are these reactions normal? Indeed they are, since they are merely examples of stress. Many everyday circumstances, such as deadlines, tests, debts, and conflicts in personal relationships are stressful.
Routine hassles at home, school, and work may create strain that affects mental and physical health and decreases the quality of life because tension accumulates. Stress is an everyday occurrence that renders emotional, physiological, and behavioral responses. When people are under stress, they usually react emotionally. Emotional responses are a natural and normal part of life, although most of the time stress tends to elicit unpleasant emotions rather than pleasurable ones. However, these unpleasant emotions serve an important purpose, since sometimes stress can make one cry and crying functions as an excellent therapy to get rid of pressure. Some common emotional responses to stress include irritation, frustration, and depression.
For instance, because many people undergo mood swings and become irritated as a reaction to stress, they may end up hurting their relatives or friends. Even more, some people might become frustrated as they notice that they cannot achieve what they want at a particular moment. This frustration makes one feel hopeless and leads to depression. Depression is the most common emotional response to stress. People, not being able to adapt to change appropriately, may feel overwhelmed and often fail to recognize that they have a problem. When the situation comes to the point of depression, it is necessary to seek professional help in order to avoid further psychological complications.
Even more, physiological changes may also accompany emotional responses. Eating disorders, insomnia, and nervous breakdowns are the most common physiological responses associated with stress. Nowadays life is so agitating that it is common for people to disregard their eating habits because of so much pressure and work. This malnutrition includes not eating sufficiently or over-eating to cope with anxiety. Insomnia is another physiological response to stress. Humans cannot function well without sleep because sleeplessness directly affects behavior.
Fatigue will make a restless person become less productive and this creates even more stress. Moreover, nervous breakdowns also constitute a direct physiological reaction to frustration. It is common for people to feel nervous when having to meet the demands of society because of pressure. A way to deal positively with stress must be found when physiological effects become apparent and there is a change in behavior. Emotional and physiological responses to stress can often lead to changes in behavior.
For instance, because of depression caused by frustration people may not work to their full potential because stress takes away their desire to excel in daily activities. People might also behaviorally respond to stress by being aggressive towards others. Aggression is almost always caused by frustration, although people may aggressively attack those who have nothing to do with their problem. Verbal abuse is an example of this type of behavior. While being emotionally disturbed, people can sometimes insult those not responsible for their misfortunes. Similarly, once the situation turns to physical abuse, it is obvious that one needs to seek treatment. Even though aggressive behavior leads to a release of emotional tension, the interpersonal conflicts that often emerge increase stress.
On the whole, behavioral changes caused by stress serve as a warning for those who need to take more positive actions to improve their reactions to stress. In brief, stress is a normal reaction to everyday circumstances that triggers emotional, physiological, and behavioral responses. Because our mental and physical health is affected by strain, it is necessary to find effective techniques to cope with stress. For instance, meditating while listening to comforting music helps to relax ones body and mind. Likewise, a soothing massage releases muscular tensions and immediately reduces pressure.
In addition, a vigorous workout relieves stress, since one is able get distracted from the problem. Finally, talking to a trustworthy person is always reassuring. All in all, it is necessary to deal with the responses to stress on time so that psychological problems do not become an issue. Bibliography none.