Coping: How People Deal with Stress?
Whether caused by schoolwork, traffic, or the job, stress is an inevitable phenomenon that is seen daily in the human life. Stress is not always bad. In small doses, stress is a good thing. It can energize and motivate a person to deal with challenges. But prolonged or excessive stress is “a negative emotional state occurring in response to events that are perceived as taxing or exceeding a person’s resource or ability to cope (Hockenbury & Hockenbury, 2001). High levels of stress have been linked to depression, anxiety, cardiovascular disease, musculoskeletal problems, impaired immune response and some forms of cancer. We all will agree that stress affects each and every person differently. Genes, personality traits, and life experiences all influence an individual’s response to stress, but despite all these, every person has to cope or at least try to change his/her circumstances. Coping or coping strategies refer to the “specific efforts, both behavioral and psychological, that people employ to master, tolerate, reduce, or minimize stressful events” (Carver, 1998). According to Psychologist Richard Lazarus and Susan Folkman, there are two basic types of coping, and each serves a purpose (Hockenbury & Hockenbury, 2001). The first type is, Problem – Focused Coping Strategies. It aims to condense or remove the root of the problem. In order to eliminate or reduce stress, a person has to identify and take charge of his own thoughts, emotions, schedule and anything that is causing the stress. This isn’t as easy as it sounds because the sources of pressure are not always obvious, but there is no better way than to accept the responsibility and take control, because until then, the stress will always remain outside an individual’s power (authority). This strategy is the best way, and it’s more beneficial in the long term, but it isn’t as productive a method for all individuals. Some have personality disorders, and they can’t...
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