Tag: pressure

January 21, 2015

sleeping manWhat is stress?

Stress is a feeling that we have in response to particular demands. Events that create stress cover a wide range of situations: they can be everything from taking a test, adjusting to a new environment, to facing a physical danger.

 

What are the common sources of stress?

  • Academic pressure
  • Pressure to fit in with peer groups
  • Adaptation to body changes
  • Transition to higher educational levels
  • Over-scheduling of extracurricular activities
  • Expectations from parents
  • Family and peer conflicts
  • Relationship problems
  • Career decisions
  • Financial concerns

 

What are the signs of being “stressed-out”?

  • Increased physical illness, due to suppression of the immune system
  • Mood swings: increased anger and irritability
  • Constant feelings of worry, nervousness, and hopelessness
  • Problems with sleeping and eating
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Withdrawal from social activities

 

Can stress have positive effects?

Yes! Although most people associate stress with worry, pressure, and tension, some types of stress are actually good for us. For example, the sense of challenge you feel before a class presentation, a performance, or a sport competition is an example of positive stress because it keeps you alert and prepares your body and your mind for the task. Many discoveries and innovative ideas are also results of positive stress. Appropriate levels of stress not only help us stay motivated, but they also add excitement to our daily activities. As you could probably imagine, life completely without stress would be pretty dull.

 

Consequences of negative stress

When handled inappropriately, negative stress can lead to serious physical and mental problems. Stress contributes to headaches, insomnia, high blood pressure, and heart diseases. Repetitive stress is also the cause of anxiety, depression, memory disturbances, and other mental disorders. It is evident that people who are chronically stressed are more likely to engage in smoking, alcohol addiction, and substance abuse.

 

How to handle stress

  • Take deep breaths
  • Have positive thoughts: Say to yourself, “I can handle this.”
  • Break down tasks into manageable parts
  • Set smaller, progressive goals
  • Be proud of your accomplishments
  • Plan ahead, avoid last-minute cramming
  • Take breaks and find ways to relax
  • Exercise and participate in activities you enjoy
  • Eat healthy, avoid too much caffeine
  • Talk to people around you about your concerns
  • Stop worrying about things that you have no control over
  • Realize that no one is perfect
Posted in Emotional Health, Health Topics by CCHRC | Tags: ,
January 21, 2015

1159994_73468412What is peer pressure?

A peer is someone in your own age group that you hang out with. Peer pressure is the feeling that you are being pushed towards making a certain choice, good or bad. Peer pressure might be difficult to avoid, especially for teenagers, because people in general like to “fit in” and be liked by their peer groups. Sometimes you don’t even know that it is happening, or that you are making choices because of peer pressure. Your peers might even use your desire to fit in to make you do things that you don’t want to do.

 

Examples of Negative peer pressure:

  • Doing things you do not want to do.
  • Feeling pushed to wear “the right” clothes.
  • Missing school.
  • Extreme dieting or bodybuilding.
  • Teasing, bullying or hurting other people.
  • Trying cigarettes, alcohol, or drugs.

 

Am I prone to peer pressure?

Certain personality traits and factors make a person more likely to give in to pressure. Recognizing these risk factors will help you make the first step in fighting peer pressure:

  • Low self-esteem
  • Lack of confidence
  • Lack of strong friendship
  • Uncertainty about one’s place within a peer group
  • Feeling isolated from peers and/or family
  • Close bond with a bully

 

How to combat peer pressure

  • Be true to yourself. Think about who you are and what is good for you.
  • Be confident and make your own decisions.
  • Feel comfortable asserting your opinions and feelings.
  • Learn from your successes and mistakes.
  • Recognize who your true friends are: these are the people whom you trust and who have your best interest in mind.
  • Prepare a mental script of how you would like to handle requests from your peers.
  • Know where you stand on key issues like alcohol and drugs and stay firm with your position.
  • Never be afraid to speak up and let others know your boundaries. Most people respect the boundaries of others when they know what they are.
  • Refuse to take part in bullying or anything designed to cause harm to another person.
  • Remember that peer pressure only wins if you let it.

 

For More Info and Interactive Games in dealing with peer pressure:

http://www.thecoolspot.gov/pressures.asp