Definition of Stress


Today, everybody is complaining that there is a lot stress all around us. It is true that the stress always present, throughout men's history. From prehistoric men until today. Prehistoric men was living in caves and huts and was in frequent stress, since he was in situation to be hunter or even hunted. In such situation, prehistoric men was under the stress. A modern man was under the stress under many situations like wars. But today, even if there is no war of force majeure, we consider being under the constant stress because of contemporary life style.

Simply, today we are under constant rush to work, from work, driving from one place to another, while trying to finish different things in shortest time possible. We find that lifestyle that to be stressful, but it seems that we cannot run away from that style of living. So what is exact definition of stress?

There are many different understanding of stress. Stress is usually defined as being under too much pressure from various sources at work, at home or elsewhere.

It would be good to define pressure to understand this definition. In physics the force is expression of physical influence of one object to another. For example, if you take the 1kg weight in your hand, it will pressure your hand, due to gravity force. Basically, this weight is not large and its influence to your hand is spread on surface between weight and your hand. Now, imagine the same weight, but this time the contact surface is the area of the needle. What will happen? Well, probably your skin will not stay intact, since the same weight is distributed on much smaller surface. In physics the pressure is defined as force applied to some surface. If the contact surface is smaller for the same force, the greater pressure will be applied per surface unit. Example, 10 kg weight applied on surface of 10 cm2 will create more pressure per cm2, than the same force applied on surface 20 cm2.

As analogy, the stress is occurring when we are exposed to some workload of obligation in short period of time. If we just have enough time we think that it would be easier to handle. It can also be a too big financial pressure in short period of time. If we just have more time for pay our debts, we think that it would be easier to handle. It can also bee too many obligations overlapping, even all these obligations are not too difficult individually. But if you apply them all at same time, we see that as to much pressure which causes stress.

All these examples shows stress caused by too much pressure compressed in too short period of time. There are other sources of stress, different from compression concept. These are one time events that are simply too difficult to handle. This could be death of somebody close to us. It can be loss of job. It can be any one-time event that is simply making too intensive to our lives that makes us to be stressed.

Basically the definition of stress is the emotional and physical strain caused by our body's response to pressure that comes from our surrounding. This strain varies in terms of severity and impact from person to person, as each person handles stress differently and responds differently to separate stressors. Stressors are the factors around us that cause us the stress.

Another definition of stress states that it is the physical and psychological reaction of an individual's body to a specific situation that evokes feelings of anger, anxiety or stress. The individual can experience stress either in the workplace, the home or some other place. This definition of stress in effect implies that it is the individual's response to a stimulus in the environment. What this suggests is that it is the new and the unknown that is typically the stress factor.

Now we see from several perspectives and different examples what is the definition of stress. This definition does not have to be the same for everybody, since we all take stress in a different way. Something that is the stress for one person doesn't not have to be a stress to another person. Therefore, the stress can be defined in many ways. The more important fact from pure definition of stress is that the stress does exist and that we must cope with it as best as we can.

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