The Knowledge Korner

At work and at home, we encounter many different stressors that cause us to experience stress. Stress is simply how our body reacts or responds to the stressors that we encounter. It can cause rapid heartbeat, anxious feelings, headaches, and other physical symptoms.

There are three general types of stressors: cataclysmic, personal and background. Cataclysmic stressors cause a great deal of stress and typically impact many people at once. Some examples are floods, tornadoes, or when the servers are down. Personal stressors are those that we would consider a major life event, such as moving, a new baby, or losing a job. Background stressors are just everyday annoyances, such as traffic or waiting in a long line.

It’s important to point out that not all situations labeled “stressful” are negative. Positive stress is known as Eustress. It can actually help motivate us and usually feels exciting. Some examples are getting a promotion, taking a vacation, or getting married. On the other hand, negative stress is known as Distress. Distress feels unpleasant and can also decrease our performance.

Prolonged stress can negatively impact our bodies. Symptoms may include headaches, sleep loss, stomach issues, low immunity, along with many other symptoms. Next month we will talk about some techniques to help us manage our stress.

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