Types of Stress

As we all begin the aging process, the types of stress that can affect us become much more important than when we were younger.

The reason for this is simple; our bodies are slowing down in some ways, and we may not react to it like we once did.

We all have experienced pressure and seen people that could handle it, as well as those that could not handle it.

The Types of Stress

The types of stress are important as it can and does affect everyone, and it is not always a bad thing.

In fact, if our body did not react to pressure, we would be a total mess mentally most of the time.

Thankfully it does, and here is how it reacts.

  • At the first sign of pressure, the brain is notified
  • Once the brain is notified, it sends help
  • The help is in the form of two hormones; Adrenalin and cortisol
  • These hormones boost both our sugar and oxygen levels
  • We become more alert and aware

We have all gone through this exact process numerous times during our lives, and the most common adage for this is “fight or flight”

Our system and its complex nature “signals” us to be ready or make a decision that this pressure is more that we can handle, and if we need to,  move or get out of situation.

During this process, our heart rate will also increase, our breathing will be more intense, and depending of the type of pressure, our muscles may also become tight and rigid.

However, despite this marvelous defense mechanism that we all have, it is meant to be only a temporary response, not a long term response.

Thing about an accident that you nearly had and how your body reacted, and then when the danger was over, you sighed, relaxed and took a deep breath.

Your body just returned to normal, your mind cleared, and you went about a normal life again.

Now, also thing about situations you were in where that involved a pressure at work and how it affected everyone in the workplace.

Some people could handle it, but some could not.

Perhaps those that could not handle pressure was not because they were weak, rather it because their system could no longer react like it was designed to react.

The Three Forms

This is where the types of stress really become important.

Here are the three major kinds.

  • Acute—also referred to as short term or routine
  • Episodic acute—also referred to as medium term or something sudden
  • Chronic—also referred to as long term

The first of the types of stress, acute or short term, is by far and away the most common.

We have faced it every day and at our age, for years, without any major issues. In fact, if you think about it, it can be kind of exciting.

It can and does come in several ways.

It may be a long par 3 in golf over water and you hit the green, finally  It can also be a traffic accident that you almost avoided, but thankfully there only small damage.

The Symptoms of Acute Pressure

It may also be an inventory in one of your retail stores where it looked bad, but it was not as bad as you thought.

However, over time, if we overdo this acute short term pressure, for example by missing your child’s or grandchild’s presentation again and again, it can begin take its toll.

Most all of us have seen and understood these dangers, and because they are short term, we have adjusted.

However, this form can still cause some minor concerns.

Here are some of the symptoms of the first types of stress

  • The common three emotions with pressure; slight anger, slight depression, anxiety
  • Small annoying headaches, muscle tightening and tension
  • Small stomach issues like upset stomachs or diarrhea
  • Slight chest pains, increased heart rate, sweaty palms

Take a minute and think back about some of our experiences we have encountered with minor pressure, and most of these you will recognize.

However, in most cases, we handled all of these symptoms very easily.

The Second Form-Episodic

The second of the types of stress, Episodic acute, is much different in several ways.

The symptoms of this form can be more serious, and as a result, our mood swings will become more dramatic and we will no longer be able to handle the anxiety like we used to.

Now, go back and think of work related situations again where people could not handle pressure like you did, or you could not handle it like others.

Rather than list symptoms, here are the classic signs of these types of stress.

  • Someone always in a hurry but habitually late.
  • They take on several challenges but lack organizational skills
  • They will believe that if something can go wrong, it will
  • They continually blame others for their mistakes
  • They are very competitive, but never seem to win
  • Their way is the “only way, and anything you do is wrong.

Now take a step back and think again.

The Third Form-Chronic

We all know people that fit every one of these descriptions. In my retail career I would have managers that ran real fast to a situation, but once there, did not know what to do.

It was always someone else's fault, not theirs.

Bottom line was, they could not handle pressure like the majority of store managers.

The final of the types of stress is the Chronic or long term form.

It can and does lead to the following symptoms

  • Depression and a loss of self esteem
  • Heart conditions of most kinds
  • Dangerous high blood pressure levels
  • Constant headaches

These are just of few of the potential problems with constant and chronic pressure.

If you are a golfer, go back and think about the par 3 over water. With the acute form of pressure, it was fun and exhilarating to hit the green finally.

It made you feel good and you wanted to keep trying.

However, what if you hit it in the water time, after time, after time, it no longer is fun; it is now the chronic form pf pressure.

What if very promise you made to be at your children’s or grandchildren’s event you never made and the reason was; because.

Whatever the reason for the excuse because was, you never controlled.

This form of the types of pressure kills us through heart attacks, strokes, suicides, and the list goes on.

Identify the three forms and control in the first form for one simple reason; if not, it will control you.

References

http://www.apa.org/helpcenter/stress-kinds.aspx

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