Causes of Stress

What are the causes of stress

Stress is typically caused by events happening in your life and/or your interpretation and expectations of events in life. Any event you place significance on can be a source of stress. There are no events too “minor” to cause you stress; it just depends on how important you consider that event.

It’s important to remember this because people have a tendency to think their own problems are not serious enough to justify their own stress. To think they are “over-reacting”. Stress management is a skill that needs to be learned and practiced. The person who’s working a high stress job, like a soldier, has developed mechanism to deal with high stress gradually and that shouldn’t be used as a comparison against whatever your own sources of stress are. Don’t minimise or disregard your own sources of stress, whatever they are.

Typically events that cause you to:

  • Change your life in some way (health, home, money etc)
  • Adopt new responsibility (promotion, new job, child etc)
  • Lose control (work changes, landlord/rent changes, health issues etc)
  • Spend more time working hard (deadlines, exams, learning new skills etc)

Not all events that cause stress are negative. You are allowed to feel stress because of otherwise happy events in life. A new child or job, for example, will likely cause stress but that doesn’t speak to your view of your new child or job but the new responsibility and change that comes with it.

It could be the result of one major thing or the accumulation of smaller issues. This might make it hard to identify the exact cause.

Personal tip: “I’ve found that making a list of all the things that cause you stress and then imagine each of the being resolved one by one can help you realise what the biggest issue is. This can then be addressed first and make the other issues slightly easier to deal with.”

Other Resources

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