Stress is often defined as the body’s response to the demands of life, although stress also involves emotions and the mind. In today’s hectic world it is often difficult to avoid a certain amount of stress.  We do need to manage it however, especially if we are experiencing high levels of stress, so we can avoid it’s potential negative impact on our lives.

Stress is the internal, conditioned reaction of a person to perceived external pressures and is experienced as thoughts and feelings as well as physical processes.

Understanding Stress in Today’s World

Stress has been described as the “leading health problem” today. In many cases, the stress experienced by us is felt in response to psychological threats, such as job loss or difficulty finding employment, the death of a loved one, or relationship issues, all of which may occur more than once in the course of our lives.

Stress evolved, however, in the form of a fight or flight response as a reaction to physical threats on one’s life. This response, which causes the physical aspects of stress—increased blood flow and clotting and elevated heart rate, blood pressure, and blood sugar—is immediate and uncontrollable, and when these physical aspects affect the body several times over the course of a day, often as a result of issues such as workplace stress, bad traffic, or familial illness, they can influence the development of conditions such as hypertension, stroke, diabetes, chronic pain, and heart attacks.

Stress can also directly cause physical symptoms such as headaches, insomnia, and fatigue, and it often contributes to mental conditions such as anxiety, depression, or irritability.


Occasionally a little stress can be helpful.  It can sharpen your senses when you are about to make a presentation or compete in an event in athletics for example.  Sports pros tend to call this “getting psyched-up”, ready to compete.  This process helps performance and is short lived and targeted on short term events.  Equally getting “Psyched-down” is just as important so they can relax and return to normal functioning.


Solve the things you can, when you can.

Time slice.  List your issues and put a time and/or date when you will deal with each one.  Keeping a diary means you can look it up, you don’t have to constantly be thinking about it.

Take one thing at a time.  Don’t get hung up on one and let the others of equal importance eat away at your time.  Write your decisions / answers down.

Write it down.  Make a list and prioritise it.

Schedule your action for when you have enough information to make an informed decision

Do the urgent things first and allocate the most time for the most important issues.

Bullying is one of the worst forms of abuse. It can be physical threats, forcing someone to do or not do something against their will. It can just as easily be something designed to frighten someone. It can also be a hidden, but just as tortuous in the form of mental abuse.  Goading,  teasing or threatening that something awful might happen.

If you feel you are being bullied – tell someone in authority. Someone who can stop it happening or alert someone else who can help you.

Here are some useful contacts:

The National Bullying Helpline – TELEPHONE 0845 22 55 787


ACAS – 0300 123 1100
Childline – 0800 111
The NSPCC – 0808 800 5000
Relate – 0300 100 1234
Splitz – 01225 777724
Victim Support – 01380 729476
Samaritans – 0845 790 9090


Posttraumatic stress (PTSD) is a common reaction to traumatic or stressful events. PTSD takes many forms and may arise immediately after the experience or even decades later. People may or may not experience PTSD after trauma, but they might also experience responses to trauma that are not diagnostically categorized as PTSD. There is no direct correlation between resilience and PTSD; in other words, living with PTSD is not an indication a person is weak or lacks resilience.

PTSD is highly treatable, and various treatment methods make it very possible to overcome symptoms of PTSD and move on from posttraumatic stress altogether.