Specialisation: Stress Management

Exploring Biological and Psychological Factors in Stress Management With Focus on the Client

Introduction

The client-counselor relationship and environment are essential for identifying the issue with the client. During the session, as the client, the counselor was able to identify stress management as the issue that was affecting me. The counselor suggested that stress comes from the challenges in relationships. Therefore, this work focuses on stress management by engaging clients in the therapeutic process. Therapeutic process building is where the counselor sets a conducive environment for the client to open up and share their side of the story, which is vital in the case of stress management. Stress has several impacts on the person and the social surroundings. Stress is known to be a force that is perceived, and it is present in almost every aspect of human life. This shows a need for a comprehensive analysis of stress on biological and psychological aspects. The analysis focusing on the relationship between the factors and the therapeutical process is vital as it provides critical insights to help develop the best coping mechanisms. This paper, therefore, discusses in detail and highlights as a client the biological and psychological facets of stress.

Borrajo, Calvete, & Urquijo (2024) suggest that stress is every day to humans and, if not managed well, has led to massive impacts on many. It has led to some committing suicide, severe depression levels, feelings of loneliness, and others losing hope, while the work-life stress has caused morale to fall, hence poor performance. Therefore, exploring stress management from biological and psychological perspectives is vital. This is a self-discovery focusing on me as a client and on comprehending the complexities of stress management within the therapeutic context. Through this reflective narrative, the researcher aims to elucidate the significance of addressing biological and psychological aspects, providing a firsthand perspective on the collaborative process between the client (I) and a counselor in navigating the intricacies of stress.

Biological Factors and Therapeutic Relationship Building

Understanding biological factors is crucial for stress management. To help me share my story well, the counselor started the session by sharing an intriguing, which made me trust him, as suggested by Shebib (2022). As he was going through the study, the counselor could pause at some points and make jokes, and we could laugh. At another point, he could ask me questions about the story. This was vital, too, in building rapport and trust during the sessions. The counselor was also friendly, making me respect him, which was critical in allowing me to believe I could confide in him.

Another thing the counselor did to build a therapeutic relationship is that the counselor was empathetic to my situation, which also played a crucial role in making me respect and honor the counselor. Another aspect of the counselor that was also vital in building the relationship was that the counselor was a good listener. He took his time to listen to all that I was sharing, and even in the case of an interruption, it was for me to add more details. Focusing on stress management, there are critical biological factors that he was able to identify. The first factor from the session with the counselor is a hormonal response. According to Wickens (2021), hormonal responses relate to hormones that are produced biologically. In the video by Atchison (2019), hormonal changes impact stress and anxiety as a client. I realized that my understanding of hormonal responses and how they are associated with physiological changes helped me to understand the experiences that were the cause of stress. In the session with the counselor, another biological factor identified was neurotransmitters. According to the video by Hiphuray4peas (2009), there are chemicals in the brain of humans that influence mood and stress levels. From the counselor, it was evident that neurotransmitters such as serotonin and dopamine play a vital role in regulating emotions, as also suggested by Atchison (2019). The understanding was essential as it helped me comprehend the connection between biological processes and emotional well-being. The last physical aspect of the session is lifestyle choices. This includes things like diet and exercise related to natural processes. The counselor for the session highlighted how a balanced lifestyle can positively impact stress levels. This discussion prompted me to reflect on my habits and make necessary adjustments to support my well-being.

Psychological Factors and Therapeutic Relationship Building

The psychological aspect that the counselor identified that relates to stress was intrinsic environment stress. This was determined as dealing with many uncertainties during a given period in my life, as identified during the session. To build the therapeutic relationship, the counselor started this session by ensuring that the place we were meeting was conducive to the meeting, which was key to building trust, as suggested by Slay-Westbrook (2019). The counselor also used a game I enjoyed playing as I shared my story, which made me feel comfortable and respected (Susanne, 2017). Another thing that I realized that the counselor did during the counseling sessions is that she encouraged shared decision-making. This was vital as I realized I had many things in mind, and making the right decisions was challenging. To help me with this, the counselor could ask for my input on what can be done and incorporate my suggestions on the therapy that he suggested. He also allowed for a thorough discussion on several subjects, as indicated by Susanne (2017). The last aspect of building the relationship was that I realized that the counselor maintained clear boundaries. This means that he was focusing on the issue at hand in a respectful manner, not going overboard. The first psychological aspect identified in the session is a loss of control. Barnes & Pinel (2021) suggest a lack of control over aspects of life leads to psychological experience. The counselor gave guidance on how my thoughts and perceptions of the issues that I was facing and how they overwhelmed me contributed to my understanding of stress. Shebib (2022) states that by identifying negative thought patterns, a collaborative effort emerged to challenge and reframe these cognitive patterns, fostering a shift towards a more positive outlook. This process heightened my awareness of the mental triggers for stress and equipped me with valuable tools to reshape my thought patterns for enhanced well-being.

The second psychological aspect was emotional regulation, which was vital in the talk with the counselor. Emotional regulation relates to managing and controlling emotional responses. The counselor provided tailored strategies that are critical in recognizing and managing emotions. According to Slay-Westbrook (2019), this,s contributes significantly to the development of self-awareness and emotional resilience. This exploration aspect facilitated a better and deeper understanding of the emotional underpinnings of stress, empowering me to navigate these feelings with more excellent skill and composure. The last element of the session with the counselor identified self-talk and the influence it has on stress levels. Self-talk is psychological as it relates to mental disorders, as suggested by Borrajo et al. (2024). Kim et al. (2021) suggest that negative self-talk is critical to high-stress levels. Therefore, the session led us to identify negative self-talk patterns and helped me learn the ways that can be transformed.

Conclusion

In summary, undertaking the task as highlighted provided me with a chance to fit in a client’s shoes for a better understanding of stress and how it can be managed. With the help of the way, the counselor was able to take me through the realization of biological and psychological factors in stress management. The first thing the counselor did was buy a relationship with me why, which played a crucial role in my opening up to share the story that had been consuming me slowly. He used several aspects, like storytelling and playing together, to build trust and rapport. From the guidance provided by the counselor, I realized the relationship between biological and psychological factors and how they shape the behavior of humans. There was an in-depth understanding of stress management in the context of a biopsychological framework in therapeutic interventions. Some of the identified factors include hormonal change, self-talk, and many others, as highlighted. Some of the factors identified were biological, while others were psychological, and the counselor played a vital role in helping me classify each identified factor through the sessions. I can attest that the counseling sessions helped me understand how to deal with stressful conditions.

References

Atchison, K. [@DrKristinAtchisZAon]. (2019, August 23). Introduction to psychology: 2.1 – the brain and behavior – the nervous system and neurons. Retrieved January 31, 2024, from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rs9AFEebHsk

Borrajo, E., Calvete, E., & Urquijo, I. (2024). Negative self-talk in runners: Emotional intelligence and perceived stress as explanatory factors. Psychology of Sport and Exercise70(102545), 102545. doi:10.1016/j.psychsport.2023.102545

Hiphuray4peas [@Hiphuray4peas]. (2009, December 5). Mirror Neurons.m4v. Retrieved January 31, 2024, from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sv1qUj3MuEc

Kim, J., Kwon, J. H., Kim, J., Kim, E. J., Kim, H. E., Kyeong, S., & Kim, J.-J. (2021). The effects of positive or negative self-talk on the alteration of brain functional connectivity by performing cognitive tasks. Scientific Reports11(1). doi:10.1038/s41598-021-94328-9

Pinel, J. P. J., & Barnes, S. (2021). Biopsychology, global edition (11th ed.). London, England: Pearson Education.

Shebib, B. (2022). Choices: Interviewing and counselling skills for Canadians (2nd ed.). Prentice-Hall.

Slay-Westbrook, S. (2017). Respect-focused therapy: Honoring clients through the therapeutic relationship and process (1st ed.). London, England: Routledge.

Slay-Westbrook, S. (2019). Respect-focused therapy: Honoring clients through the therapeutic relationship and process (1st ed.). London, England: Routledge.

Wickens, A. P. (2021). Introduction to biopsychology (4th ed.). London, England: SAGE Publications.

Mental Health Issues: Stress

Julie, a 42-year-old female, is experiencing many stressors in her life. Julie is experiencing stress in the body system through headaches and difficulty sleeping, and she is experiencing an increase in illnesses in the body system. Stress in the body can come in many forms and symptoms, according to some of the studies from my research. The job that Julie works daily is a job with high demand and low control. Julie is also dealing with a myriad of family issues as well. Her mother has experienced a significant health complication, and Julie is responsible for her.

Workplace Stress Management

Priority and Delegation: Julie can collaborate with her supervisor to prioritize and delegate effectively. Research shows that distributing workload or having manageable expectations can bring down stress associated with work (Menardo et al., 2022). Sharing some responsibilities will create a more favorable work environment and make work easier.

Family Dynamics and Communication

Establish Open Communication with Family: Having cultivated open communication with her husband regarding the challenges that she is facing, studies show that strong family support is essential to cope with stress if there is understanding within her family. Emotional support is essential in being together for a solution (Gammage & Nolte, 2020). Having family meetings or trying family counseling might help to have healthier communication.

Personal Well-being and Self-Care

Prioritize Self-Care Activities: Julie’s overall well-being would significantly improve if she were encouraged to prioritize self-care activities. Research strongly supports the benefits of regular physical activity, adequate sleep, and relaxation techniques in managing stress (Martinez et al., 2021). By incorporating these activities into her daily routine, Julie can increase her physical and mental resistance to the overall stress and, therefore, stressors.

Support System and Seeking Professional Help

Build Social Support: Julie should reach out to friends or support groups to build upon her social support network. Research has shown that positive social connections improve mental health. Sharing experiences and advice with others can help Julie gain different perspectives and better cope with problems. She should also consider professional counseling or therapy (Kim et al., 2020). Therapy will enable her to gain insight and support to help her cope with difficult emotions and challenges.

Managing Elderly Parent’s Needs

When Julie begins to assist her mother, she could help her set up a support system, including a caregiving schedule, or research any community resources related to her condition and the current side effects that she is enduring. Research shows that the support of a caregiver is essential in avoiding burnout (Schulz et al., 2020). They can maintain their mental well-being and still provide and help care for their families.

In summary, Julie’s state of affairs emphasizes the complex interactions between task strain, family relationships, private fitness, and caring obligations. Julie might also better manage her pressures and beautify her trendy proper being by setting self-care first, encouraging open communication within her own family, seeking guidance from social networks, and considering getting professional treatment. Additionally, caregiver burnout may be prevented by implementing an assistance network for her elderly mom. By setting those ideas into practice, Julie may be better equipped to deal with her obstacles and maintain a happier, more balanced life for herself and her family.

References

Gammage, R. J., & Nolte, L. (2020). Understanding and Communication about an Adult’s Mental Health Problem by their Adult Relatives: A Systematic Review. Journal of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing. https://doi.org/10.1111/jpm.12617

Kim, E. J., Yu, J. H., & Kim, E. Y. (2020). Pathways linking mental health literacy to professional help‐seeking intentions in Korean college students. Journal of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing27(4). https://doi.org/10.1111/jpm.12593

Martinez, N., Connelly, C., Perez, A., & Calero, P. (2021). Self-care: A concept analysis. International Journal of Nursing Sciences8(4), 418–425. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijnss.2021.08.007

Menardo, E., Di Marco, D., Ramos, S., Brondino, M., Arenas, A., Costa, P., Vaz de Carvalho, C., & Pasini, M. (2022). Nature and Mindfulness to Cope with Work-Related Stress: A Narrative Review. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health19(10), 5948. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19105948

Schulz, R., Beach, S. R., Czaja, S. J., Martire, L. M., & Monin, J. K. (2020). Family Caregiving for Older Adults. Annual Review of Psychology71(1), 635–659. https://doi.org/10.1146/annurev-psych-010419-050754

Stress Management Activities

Introduction

To navigate challenging situations, we need our bodies to produce stress, fight, or flight reactions. Our body responds to an imminent threat by generating stress hormones, stiffening our tendons and muscles, raising the pressure in our blood, and causing our lungs and heart to perform more intense, as well as generating an increase in sugar and lipids to provide us with energy (Publishing, 2019). Our body resumes regular functions whenever a threat is no longer there. Nevertheless, if we experience stress regularly, our immunity may get chronically activated, significantly increasing the likelihood of numerous diseases like heart disease, dementia, and stroke. Inflammation overgrowth is another effect of this. In today’s world, stress is a prevalent issue. I decided to research some fresh stress-reduction strategies to lessen the stress in my life. I selected meditation, relaxation, and nature as my stress-relieving pastimes. Over two weeks, I dedicated at least 20 to 30 minutes a day to each activity. In the following paragraphs, I will discuss my experiences with each strategy and analyze which will be most beneficial to me.

Relaxation Activities

After tossing here and there on how to reduce my stress, my friend proposed a relaxation method for me, which she claimed to be using. Since she seems good at managing her stress well, it became my first target method to try it. Plenty of us associate relaxation with vegging out and watching a small quantity of the channel on a sofa after a demanding day. However, it does not do much to lessen the negative impacts of stress. Instead, I realized that I needed to trigger my body’s natural relaxation reaction, a deep sleep-like condition that reduces stress, lowers my heart and breathing rates, reduces my blood pressure, and restores harmony to my physical being and mental state (Robinson, 2019). While I may have opted to pay for an experienced massage or acupuncturist, I realized I could perform most relaxation exercises independently with the right approach. Nevertheless, it is crucial to remember that only some respond well to a particular relaxation technique. Thus, I tried breathing and visualization techniques that spoke to me.

After five minutes of rhythmic breathing to relax, I closed my eyes and visualized my turbid being as the turbulent stream of water. I can well picture myself sitting by the stream and absorbing everything I can. I see how including every sensory information as possible improves visualization (Godman, 2022). I employ focused concentration over the course of the following 20 minutes to quiet the stream’s churning water. After succeeding, I maintain my composure during the stretch for five minutes before completing my relaxation exercise.

The most frequently performed relaxation is the progressive muscle relaxation that I can perform at any time, place, and situation. Combining the tensing and releasing of muscles progressively from head to toe with the breathing techniques of relaxation. The two have been a great help when dealing with my stress since I can do muscle relaxation even if I am busy.

Nature

Nature is considered a way of transferring our minds from busy thinking and indulging in the beautiful scenery surrounding us. Although life in the savanna differed greatly from how we live today, our mental processes remain essentially unchanged. Despite technological developments, we continue to maintain a strong tie with nature. Scientific evidence suggests that if we do not nurture that connection, we could suffer in numerous ways—our psychological health being just one of them. So I made it a routine to create about 30 minutes to interact with nature whenever I feel stressed. Here, I try to encourage myself to spend at least 20 minutes three times a week in a natural setting for eight weeks. The locations varied, including yards, neighborhood parks, and green spaces close to my employment (Godman, 2022). Throughout their excursions in nature, I also strolled or sat. I venture outdoors to green, natural areas when I am feeling down. I have found that going on a walk in the forests helps me fight depression, and just seeing the natural world from my office has been uplifting when I am sad. Nature offers scenes that softly draw my attention rather than abruptly seizing it and calm my nerves rather than frazzle them.

I occasionally experience feelings of loss and question the purpose of existence. I may be reminded of the world’s amazingness with 30 minutes of nature amazement. Forests that were decades old before my birth, mountains above the horizon, and a sky filled with endless stars are all-natural gifts. Whenever it reaches its mind-blowing awesomeness, nature never ceases to amaze me, sends chills down my spine, and reminds me that I am a small part of a vast cosmos.

Meditation

Meditation was one of the new methods that I gave it a try to try and get rid of my stress and calm my unstable mind. I sometimes consider meditating if stress is making me feel tense, apprehensive, or worried. In approximately 20 minutes, even a brief period of meditation might assist me in regaining my composure and inner serenity. I also understood that anybody can meditate. It is easy and reasonably priced.

Additionally, no special tools are needed. Additionally, I may meditate wherever I am, whether when walking, commuting, waiting in queue for a medical professional, or perhaps amid a challenging company conference. I also realized that meditation is a broader practice for those peace-loving individuals who want to shut themselves from disturbing thoughts, such as myself (Sutton, 2020). Meditation is considered a form of supplementary medicine for the mind and body. Complete relaxation and mental calmness are two effects of meditation. I concentrate throughout the meditation and eliminate the constant stream of disorganized ideas that could be stressing me out. I always hoped this procedure would improve my mental and emotional health.

One of the main meditation activities I explored in my stress reduction technique is the body scan meditation I performed for 30 minutes. This kind of meditation directs my concentration to different areas of my body. I commence at my toes and gradually work upward from there up, similar to progressive muscle relaxation. I merely concentrate on how each area of my body experiences, without classifying the feelings as good or bad, rather than contracting and loosening my muscles.

I typically lay on my back with my legs straight, my arms at my sides, and my eyes shut. I need to concentrate on my inhalation and exhalation for around five minutes before I feel relaxed. I then direct my attention to my right foot’s toes (Sutton, 2020). I was observing any feelings I experienced while keeping my attention on my breathing. I picture the flow of every deep breath reaching my toes. I focus on this region for four to six seconds, if not longer. Then I turn my attention to the bottom of my right foot. I am paying attention to any physical feelings I experience while imagining each breath coming from the bottom of my foot. After a few minutes, I repeated, shifting my attention to my right ankle. I go on to my calf, thigh, knee, and hip before repeating the process on my left leg. I then work my way up the body, traversing the shoulders, chest, upper back, and lower back. I constantly pay special attention to each part of my body that gives me discomfort or hurts. I finish the body scan in 20 minutes and then relax for 5 minutes in peace and stillness while observing how my body is feeling. I will stretch if I need to and gradually open my eyes after that.

I am not choosy; all the stress management activities I recently tried seem to work well for me. This is true since all three activities depend on each other. One can only relax by connecting to nature or performing meditation directly or indirectly. It is like relaxation depends on meditation, while meditation, on the other hand, depends on nature harnessing the power and benefit nature might provide (Sutton, 2020). However, the best stress reduction activity for me is nature connection. The highest cortisol reduction was found to occur after investing a minimum of twenty to thirty minutes in a natural environment. After that, the benefits of stress reduction increased more gradually. The moment of the day and specific environments had little impact on stress concentrations. Therefore whenever I needed to unwind or concentrate on my mental health, I looked for a natural place to relax and get a moment in. Varying the environment can help inspire creativity, and the outdoors provides stimulation that I cannot find while glued to a TV. For instance, four days outdoors increased my problem-solving ability by fifty percent.

Conclusion

Stress can be devastating to one’s health, especially the negative stress that drains a person’s mind and physical state. Such stress needs to be managed efficiently. It is better to acknowledge that stress cannot be uprooted entirely since they are part of people and is either the driving force toward success or failure. The only option available is to regulate its control over us using various stress reduction activities suitable for one’s personality. Everyone is different; such diversity requires various measures while selecting stress reduction activities. Meditation, relaxation, and nature activities have proven effective for my stress reduction process. We do not have to let stress control us. We should not let stress stop us from accomplishing whatever we desire. Instead, stress ought to motivate us to accomplish our goals and face obstacles that will help us advance. There must be no justification for avoiding stress or letting it consume you. We might view stress as a natural element that may energy and drive us to face both anticipated and unforeseen obstacles by adopting methods for dealing with and gaining control.

References

Godman, H. (2022, March 1). Top ways to reduce daily stress. Harvard Health. https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/top-ways-to-reduce-daily-stress

Publishing, H. H. (2019, July 1). A 20-minute nature break relieves stress. Harvard Health. https://www.health.harvard.edu/mind-and-mood/a-20-minute-nature-break-relieves-stress

Robinson, L. (2019, May 2). HelpGuide.org. HelpGuide.org. https://www.helpguide.org/articles/stress/relaxation-techniques-for-stress-relief.htm

Sutton, J. (2020, June 5). 18 Stress Management Activities and Worksheets to Help Clients Beat Stress. PositivePsychology.com. https://positivepsychology.com/stress-management-activities-worksheets/

Stress and Stress Management Strategies

Introduction

Stress is a natural feeling of inability to cope with particular demands and events. According to Lehrer and Woolfolk (2021), stress is the body’s natural mechanism of defense against any danger that may cause harm. In detail, stress causes an increase in specific hormone levels that prepare the body to confront or evade danger, commonly referred to as the fight or flight mechanism. Stress is experienced differently by people because people react differently to stressful situations. For instance, one person may seem less stressed than another, yet they are facing similar stressors. However, these differences may be attributed to past experiences and mental conditions. There are many causes of any form of stress. Nonetheless, the most common causes include too much pressure, significant life changes, worry, incapacitation, and unpleasant experiences such as hate and abuse.

Types of Stress

There are two types of stress, including acute and chronic stress. Acute stress, the most common form of stress, is usually short-term and develops due to pressures linked to recently occurring events or upcoming challenges. For instance, a person may be stressed due to a recent argument with a loved one or a nearing deadline. However, this type of stress eventually reduces or disappears once a person resolves their problems. Moreover, despite challenges that may cause acute stress, there is always a possible intervention. Therefore, acute stressors are new and always have a clear solution (Rohleder, 2019). On the other hand, chronic stress is a form of stress that develops over time and can be very harmful compared to acute stress. According to Rohleder (2019), chronic stress develops when an individual cannot find ways to avoid their stressors and has quit seeking solutions. For instance, a person may develop chronic stress due to ongoing poverty, unhappy marriages, or past traumatic experiences. Bodies of people with chronic stress find it difficult to return to normal levels of stress hormone activity which can lead to adverse effects.

Impacts of Stress

All forms of stress can have dire consequences on someone’s physical and mental health. For instance, research indicates that stress can affect feelings, thoughts, and behavior (Lehrer & Woolfolk, 2021). If stress is left unchecked, it may lead to increased risks of health problems, including obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and high blood pressure. Moreover, stress can lead to depression, significantly contributing to suicidal ideations, especially among young adults. For this reason, it is essential to identify one’s stressors and strategies to manage stress to prevent undesirable outcomes linked to stress and depression.

Stress Management Strategies

Stress management includes tools, techniques, and strategies to reduce stress and its associated negative impacts on a person’s mental or physical health. Stress management helps people deal with stress and difficult situations, leading to a more balanced and healthier life. There are numerous strategies to manage stress; however, the common evidence-based strategies include the following:

Identifying Sources of Stress

Stress management is a process whose initial stage is identifying the sources of stress in one’s life. Although it is easy to identify the usual causes of stress, such as changes in jobs and unhappy marriages, it can be challenging to establish the sources of chronic stress. However, feelings, thoughts, and behaviors play a central role in developing an individual’s stress levels (Amanvermez et al., 2020). For this reason, the best approach to identifying the sources of stress is by assessing attitudes, habits, and excuses. Moreover, experts assert that until individuals accept their role in creating or maintaining stress, their stress levels will remain out of control. In addition, individuals can identify their stressors by starting a stress journal where they keep track of their stress episodes and how they deal with them. Besides, keeping such records can be critical in identifying themes and patterns.

Practicing the 4 A’s of stress management

While stress is a response from the nervous system, some stressors occur at predictable times. For instance, employed people have few hours a day to complete extensive work or attend meetings causing inevitable stress. According to Can et al. (2020), an individual can handle predictable stressors by either changing their reaction or the situation. Therefore, people are advised to consider the four A’s (Avoid, alter, adapt, accept) when deciding their options in any given situation. In detail, it is possible to avoid predictable stressors by creating distance between oneself and the stressor factor, such as a co-worker or someone different. Moreover, one can alter stressful situations by communicating clearly and ensuring people understand your expectations. Also, accepting the occurrence of some situations can help ease much stress in case avoiding and altering the situation is not possible. Additionally, adapting or changing one’s expectations or standards of stressful events can promote one’s ability to cope with stress.

Engaging in Physical Activity

High-stress levels often demotivate people causing them to be inactive, yet researchers recommend physical activity as one of the most effective stress relievers. According to (Bischoff et al. (2019), physical activity has numerous health benefits, including increasing the production of endorphins, the brain’s feel-good neurotransmitters, causing a reduction in stress levels. Moreover, engaging in physical activities can serve as a distraction from the stressful events occurring in someone’s life. However, researchers also recommend that the choice of physical activity should be an activity that one likes in order to increase the likelihood of sticking with it. Besides, one can add some mindful elements, such as paying attention to physical sensations, to break the cycle of negative thoughts linked to overwhelming stress.

Connecting to Others

Different people handle stressful events differently. However, many people tend to isolate themselves during stressful events. However, it is always calming when someone spends time with another person who makes them feel understood and safe. According to research, physical interactions can trigger a cascade of hormones responsible for counteracting the body’s defensive responses associated with stress (Lehrer & Woolfolk, 2021). Consequently, healthy interactions with accommodating people are viewed as a natural stress reliever that helps fight anxiety and depression. While not all people an individual talks to have the capacity to fix their problems, being good listeners is enough to facilitate the process of opening up to someone. For instance, employees and students can reach out to colleagues and fellow students if they have something troubling them. Consequently, one creates and maintains a network of trusted people, thus improving the resiliency to life stressors. For this reason, it is necessary to regularly connect with family and friends in person as a stress management strategy.

Managing Time Better

One of the significant contributors to everyday stress for employees and students is poor time management. When one is stretched too thin and is running behind, one finds it hard to maintain calm or focus. Consequently, one avoids all other stress management strategies, including socializing, thus elevating one’s stress levels. Therefore, it is necessary to have time management skills in order to reduce work or school-related stress (Kassymova et al., 2018). For instance, one of the best time management skills is to avoid over-committing oneself. In detail, scheduling things back-to-back or fitting many activities into a single day is unhealthy. Moreover, it is essential to prioritize tasks and break projects into smaller doable tasks within a specific time frame. Besides, delegating responsibility at home, school or work is an effective strategy to prevent overwhelming stress.

Maintaining a Healthy Lifestyle

Stress and lifestyle are highly correlated. According to research, a healthy lifestyle can help manage stress or increase one’s ability to cope with stress (Bremner et al., 2020). In detail, people are advised to eat healthy foods because nourished bodies have better energy and clear minds to cope with stress. At the same time, people should reduce their caffeine and sugar intake and avoid alcohol and drug intake. In other words, taking drugs and alcohol may temporarily escape stress. However, masking or avoiding dealing with the issue at hand only worsens stress later. Therefore, it is best to deal with situations with a clear mind that exacerbates stress impacts by consuming drugs and alcohol. In addition, getting enough sleep is a component of a healthy lifestyle that reduces stress levels and fuels the body and mind.

Conclusion

In conclusion, stress is inevitable in a human being’s daily life. Moreover, there are numerous sources of stress in various settings, including school, work, and home. However, everyone can address their stressful events through stress management. In detail, many stress management techniques efficiently prevent or reduce stress levels. For this reason, people should practice stress management, whose first primary step is identifying the stressor factors to manage stress effectively. Subsequently, strategies including engaging in exercises, better time management, healthy lifestyles, and connecting with other people can be practiced to manage stress. Moreover, avoiding, altering, adapting, or accepting stressful situations can effectively facilitate the process of stress management. Consequently, effective stress management helps prevent long-term adverse outcomes, including increased risk for high blood pressure, depression, and heart disease. Although stress is inevitable in a human being’s daily life, it is only harmful to physical and mental health if left unchecked.

References

Amanvermez, Y., Rahmadiana, M., Karyotaki, E., Wit, L., Ebert, D. D., Kessler, R. C., & Cuijpers, P. (2020). Stress management interventions for college students: A systematic review and meta‐analysis. Clinical Psychology: Science and Practice. https://doi.org/10.1111/cpsp.12342

Bischoff, L. L., Otto, A.-K., Hold, C., & Wollesen, B. (2019). The effect of physical activity interventions on occupational stress for health personnel: A systematic review. International Journal of Nursing Studies97, 94–104. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijnurstu.2019.06.002

Bremner, J. D., Moazzami, K., Wittbrodt, M. T., Nye, J. A., Lima, B. B., Gillespie, C. F., Rapaport, M. H., Pearce, B. D., Shah, A. J., & Vaccarino, V. (2020). Diet, Stress and Mental Health. Nutrients12(8), 2428. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu12082428

Can, Y. S., Iles-Smith, H., Chalabianloo, N., Ekiz, D., Fernández-Álvarez, J., Repetto, C., Riva, G., & Ersoy, C. (2020). How To Relax in Stressful Situations: A Smart Stress Reduction System. Healthcare8(2), 100. https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare8020100

Kassymova, K., Kosherbayeva, N., Sangilbayev, S., & Schachl, H. (2018). Stress management techniques for students. Proceedings of the International Conference on the Theory and Practice of Personality Formation in Modern Society (ICTPPFMS 2018)198. https://doi.org/10.2991/ictppfms-18.2018.10

Lehrer, P. M., & Woolfolk, R. L. (2021). Principles and Practice of Stress Management, Fourth Edition. In Google Books. Guilford Publications. https://books.google.com/books?hl=en&lr=&id=ibb2DwAAQBAJ&oi=fnd&pg=PP1&dq=stress+management&ots=8tR_xPqQSL&sig=vwTRoMxaLPyWtjOEr-DAD9DyWJs

Rohleder, N. (2019). Stress and inflammation – The need to address the gap in the transition between acute and chronic stress effects. Psychoneuroendocrinology105. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.psyneuen.2019.02.021