Stress Management

Stress Management is a wide variety of techniques, methods and procedures to handle stress. It has been a trending topic ever since different research studies showed the correlations between stress and the emergence, development and progression of dreadful diseases such as cardiovascular diseases, stroke, and mental disorders.

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Historical Groundwork

In order to fully understand how to manage stress, it is important to discover where the stress originates. Thus, various studies focused on the sources of stress so that the stress experience could be managed more efficiently and effectively.

What is Stress?

Hans Selye, the author of the General Adaptation Syndrome, worked with Walter Cannon in his attempt to provide an underpinning of the scientific study of stress. From the animal studies, the two researchers extrapolated their experiments to human beings in order to identify whether the physiological responses of the animals to stressors were also exhibited by humans.

Following Selye's studies, human response to stress was also studied by Richard Rahe, one of the proponents of of the Holmes and Rahe Stress Scale. Together with his co-researchers, Rahe emphasized that external stressors were the sources of stress of individuals. On the other hand, subsequent studies showed proofs that the earlier identified stressors were not the actual sources of stress. Rather, those were the internal stressors, or the manner by which the individual perceives and intends to react to the stressor.

Related Models to Stress Management

A. The Transactional Model

In 1984, Richard Lazarus and Susan Folkman proposed the Transactional Model (Cognitive Appraisal), a model that emphasizes how stress becomes the result of the imbalance between what the situation demands and what the person possesses in relation to those demands. According to them, stress is not directly resulting from the source of the stress otherwise known as the stressors; rather, it emerges because of the individual’s inability to satisfy demands. For these two researchers, therefore, stress management relates to the capacity of a person to utilize his resources in order to cope with the stress.

The Transactional Model tells us that a stress management program can only become effective if the individual’s ability to eliminate, reduce, or cope with stress is successful assessed, and that the factors related to such capacity are put into consideration.

B. Health Realization Model

Also called as the Innate Health Model of Stress, the Health Realization Model states that the presence of a probable stressor does not directly result to the stress experience. This idea was opposes that of the Transactional Model, because it states that the stress management program must be centered on the perception of the potential stressor by the individual, not on his appraisal of stress coping abilities.

According to this model, the appraisal must be focused on filtering one’s mind of negativity an insecurity, so that he would not perceived a potential stressor as a source of stress, and would therefore lead to a more effective elimination or reduction of stress.

Stress Management Techniques

More and more people have realized their need to handle stress in a more effective way , which is why it is nearly impossible to identify all the stress management techniques applied by each of us. Nevertheless, here are the mostly recognized techniques on stress management:

  • Exercise
  • Starting a New a Hobby
  • Meditation
  • Autogenic training
  • Artistic Expression
  • Fractional relaxation
  • Progressive relaxation
  • Spas
  • Alternative/ natural medicine
  • Social activity
  • Cognitive therapy
  • Conflict resolution
  • Deep breathing
  • Reading novels
  • Prayer
  • Relaxation techniques
  • Listening to Music
  • Yoga
Full reference: 

(May 10, 2012). Stress Management. Retrieved Jul 22, 2024 from

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