What is Stress?

What is Stress?

“Stress is the inability to cope with a perceived or real threat to one’s mental, physical, emotional, and spiritual wellbeing which results in a number of physiological responses and adaptations.”
Seaward, Brian L. (1994). Managing Stress, Jones and Bartlett, London.

“Stress results from an imbalance between demands and resources.”
Lazarus, R.S. and Folkman, S. (1984). Stress, Appraisal and Coping, New York: Springer.

“Stress occurs when pressure exceeds your perceived ability to cope.”
Palmer, S. 1999.

Stress is a normal part of everyone’s life. However, too much stress or ignoring stress can cause both physical and mental health problems.

Types of Stress

Eustress: perceived as good stress, might be motivational or spiritual

Acute: comes up quickly, is intense and disappears quickly

Chronic Stress: stress that is a perceived threat which may not be as intense as an acute but is over a longer period of time

Seek Help When Necessary

If someone is under more stress than just dealing with a passing difficulty, it may be helpful to talk with a medical professional, spiritual advisor, counseling and mental health staff, or employee assistance professional.