Sunday, December 14, 2008

Are You Adding Stress to Your Life?

A lot of people complain about the stress caused by their career, family, and social life. But most do not realize that a lot, if not all, of the stress they experience are actually self-inflicted. So the next time you feel like venting your frustrations or complaining about the stresses in your life, take a step back and see if you are guilty of the following factors that contribute to self-inflicted stress:

Being a Type A person

People with Type A personalities are generally identified as being a perfectionist who is strict and rigid with other people, but most of all, with themselves. Being a Type A person means that you are extremely competitive and obsessed with work. But most of all, you are extremely conscious of time and are aggressive. You often get frustrated while waiting in line, interrupt others often, walk or talk at a rapid pace, and are always painfully aware of the time and how little of it you have to spare. You are also prone to impatience, rudeness, and being easily upset over small things. Aside from straining your relationships with the people you work and live with, all that rushing and competition are bound to add stress to your life.


More than seeing the glass as half-empty, pessimism refers to a wider world view or way of thinking that disables you to see things as they really are and attribute to them negative things. As such, you undermine your belief in yourself, suffer from poorer health outcomes, have fewer positive life events, and experience negative consequences. These repercussions of pessimism can cause and add more stress to your already stressful life.

Negative Self Talk

A lot of people resort to self talk for a number of things. Whether it is to talk themselves into doing or not doing something, work out a problem in their heads, or give themselves a boost, a lot of people find talking and listening to their inner voices useful. If you are one of these people who indulge in self talk, take a moment to listen to what your inner voice is saying. It might be telling you about things that are not really there in the first place like attributing malevolent intent to your boss's praise about your work or your cousin's willingness to house-sit for you in a pinch. Negative self-talk will cause you to miss out on opportunities and benefits while increasing your stress by driving you to worry about non-existent problems.

Poor Interpersonal Skills

Do you feel that other people are just hindrances to achieving your goal? Or do you find it difficult to relate to other people? Poor interpersonal skills can strain your relationship with your family, friends, and colleagues. This can cause additional emotional burden and stress.

If you find yourself guilty of these factors, it may be time to get your stress in check lest you risk suffering from the following effects of stress:

  • Excess weight or obesity. People who are stressed often seek comfort in food and are unmindful of the healthy choices. Even if you can easily buy weight loss drugs online, they will be of no use if you make unhealthy food choices and lack exercise.
  • Chronic diseases. A lot of chronic diseases and disorders like heart problems and depression are rooted in stress.

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Kristine Anne Gonzaga is a content writer and researcher who specializes in health topics and health-related issues. She delights in finding tips and ideas on simple and practical health care and sharing them through her writing.

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