Stress can be debilitating, and it can cause and/or aggravate health problems. And since stress is a normal part of human existence — nobody is immune to it — it’s important to arm ourselves with knowledge so that we recognize when stress rears its ugly head. (Amazingly, we don’t always notice it’s happening to us.) Stress Awareness Month happens each April. It’s important to learn some strategies for coping with this particular silent scourge. You’ve come to the right place for that. Let’s get started!
STRESS AWARENESS MONTH TIMELINE
Experts get all stressed out
The organization dedicated to the workplace and personal stress management is founded. It rebrands itself as the International Stress and Tension Control Society in 1981 — and finally as the International Stress Management Association in 1989.
- The 1950s
Personality types are defined
American cardiologists Meyer Friedman and Ray Rosenman develop their theory of Type A personalities, for whom stress is often a way of life — and death.
Hans Selye investigates stress
Viennese physician Hans Selye begins his pioneering studies into stress at McGill University in Montreal. It was Selye who developed the concept of a general adaptation syndrome.
- Early 20th century
Fight or flight takes off
American physiologist Walter Bradford Cannon coins the term “fight-or-flight response.” It is now generally described as being the first state of general adaptation syndrome that organisms use to deal with stress.
HOW TO OBSERVE STRESS AWARENESS MONTH
One of the most effective ways to deal with stress is to learn how to silence the mind. Meditation is one of the most popular methods of achieving this quiet.
Another way to battle the debilitating effects of stress is to exercise. Whether you’re a jogger, bicyclist our just like to take long walks, be sure to get some fresh air and exercise into your daily routine.
Visit your doctor
They’re really in the best position to get you started on the path to a stress-free lifestyle. Make an appointment today.
4 STRESSFUL FACTS YOU NEED TO KNOW
Stress can help — sometimes
According to the National Institute of Mental Health, “stress can motivate people to prepare or perform and might even be life-saving in some situations.”
It’s sickening — literally
People under stress – especially those prone to chronic stress — are more susceptible to a variety of ailments, from headaches and insomnia to high blood pressure and heart disease.
Stressed? Here’s why
A survey by the American Psychological Association found that the five factors most often cited as a source of stress were money, work, family, economic outlook and relationships.
America’s highest and lowest stress states
A report on WalletHub found that the most stressed-out states in America are Louisiana, New Mexico and West Virginia. The least? Minnesota, North Dakota and Utah.
WHY STRESS AWARENESS MONTH IS IMPORTANT
It reminds us to pay attention to our health
According to the official website, “Stress Awareness Month is a national, cooperative effort to inform people about the dangers of stress, successful coping strategies, and harmful misconceptions about stress that are prevalent in our society.”
It’s going strong
Stress Awareness Month has been an ongoing campaign of awareness and education since 1992.
Because we’re all feeling it
A recent survey found that about two-thirds of U.S. workers report engaging in behavior such as drinking or crying regularly in order to deal with stress.