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The Most Common Causes of Stress

Everyone can experience stress. The human body is designed to feel stress and respond to it. Stress keeps us alert and prepared to prevent danger. Being knowledgeable on the prime causes of stress is important and using your knowledge to control stress is vital. Learning about these stress causes can arm us with defense once stress attacks us.

Copyright (c) 2008 Konstantin Koss

Everyone can experience stress. The human body is designed to feel stress and respond to it. Stress keeps us alert and prepared to prevent danger. Being knowledgeable on the prime causes of stress is important and can greatly help us deal with stress as it arises.

The cause of stress changes as we age. A stressed child at young age can threw tantrums but when he becomes a student, he can be stressed by school works. Once he becomes a teen, he is stressed by dating and relationship. And the causes of stress differ as he grows older thereon.

So what really causes stress? Anything can cause stress if it allows you to adapt to changes in the environment. The body will have to react to changes with mental, emotional and physical responses. All people have their own ways of adjusting to changes, thus the stress causes can differ for each individual.

*General Causes of Stress*

Generally, the causes of stress are:

1.Threat. An apparent threat can lead a person to be stressed. Different threats include physical, social, financial, and others. It will become worse if the person experiencing the stress feels that he can't do anything to lessen the threat.

2.Fear. Threat can cause fear which further leads to stress. Fear advances to imagined outcomes and these outcomes are the real causes of stress.

3.Uncertainty. When people are uncertain, they can't predict and thus they feel they are not control of a situation. This can lead to a feeling of fear and of threat.

4.Cognitive dissonance. We are experiencing cognitive dissonance if there is a gap between thinking and doing. This dissonance can also happen when we can't meet our commitments. This dissonance can therefore lead to stress.

Other than the general causes of stress, there are the life causes of stress. Such causes include:

-Health: illness, pregnancy, injury

-Crime: burglary, mugging, sexual molestation, pick-pocketed

-Argument: with friends, family, boss, spouse, boss, co-workers

-Death: of friend, spouse, family

-Money: investing it, lack of it, owning it

-Sexual problems: with partner, getting partner

-Physical change: new work hours, lack of sleep

-Family change: marriage, divorce, new baby, separation

-Self abuse: alcoholism, drug abuse, self-harm

-Environment change: in house, school, job, jail, town

-Responsibility increase: new job, new dependent

-New location: moving house, vacation

*Causes of Stress in the Workplace*

There are also stress-related to work. United Kingdom's Health and Safety Executive gives 6 key stress related factors at work:

1.Demands of the job.

2.Relationship with colleagues

3.Control staff on how they can do their work

4.Workplace changes

5.Receiving support from superiors and colleagues

6.Understanding their responsibilities and roles.

The other indicators of stress at work are:

-High staff turnover

-Sickness absence


-Poor team communication

-Contribution and value

-Lack of performance feedback

-Technological change

-Working for long hours

-Lack of clear roles and responsibilities

-Dissatisfaction with the non-monetary benefits

-Mundane and boring work

-Uncomfortable workplace

-One-off incidents

We may not admit it but the lives of students are also faced with a lot of stresses. There are many pressures that are faced by students at school. These pressures equate to a lot of stress. Some of the school stresses are tests and examinations, reports, school bully, difficult subject, strict teachers, etc.

From the causes mentioned above, you may be asking yourself which among them are the leading causes of stress. In 1967, Richard Rahe and Thomas Holmes, both from University of WashingtonFree Reprint Articles, conducted a study on the relationship between illnesses and significant life events. They compiled the major causes of stress and created a chart as a part of their study. The chart which had 43 stress causes in 1967 was updated on 2006 with 55 additional causes of stress. This proves that our society finds more causes of stress year after year.

Studies come up with ranking for the major causes of stress. The online poll LifeCare Inc. conducted a survey on the top most causes of stress in 2005. Majority of the respondents considered finances to be the leading cause of stress. Next is work related stress such as job security. Third in the rank is family stress followed by personal concerns such as shopping and household chores. The fifth cause of stress is personal health and safety; sixth is personal relationship and the last in the rank is death.

There are seemingly endless causes of stress and we can find some new causes as long as we live. Everyone has to be aware of these causes in order to take control of the situations that can potentially lead to stress. Learning about these causes can arm us with defense once stress attacks us.

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Konstantin Koss runs the popular website Real Want to learn more about stress causes and how to handle stress? Discover the best way to relaxation on his website.

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