Stress caused by such demands of environmental forces

Stress is a person’s adaptive response to a stimulus that places excessive psychological demands on that person. All responses require utilization of energy. Any demand made on the body for a natural, expected and routine activity does not create stress usually. Stress also does not necessarily occur due to undesirable occurrences. However, if a situation requires adaptation to new circumstances thereby producing an increased demand on a vital activity, it may generate stress in the form of a stereotyped pattern of bio-chemical, functional and structural changes in the human organism. These situations could be fear, pain, anger, fatigue, emotional arousal humiliation, frustration, loss of concentration, non-occurrence of an expected event, occurrence of an unexpected event, death/separation of a loved one and unexpected success which require a change in the operational style. In other words, stress is a state of mind reflecting certain biochemical reactions in the human body and is projected by a sense of anxiety, tension and depression and is caused by such demands of environmental forces or internal forces that cannot be fulfilled by the resources available to the person.

The magnitude of stress is determined by the environmental forces or an individual’s operational style. Such environmental events, conditions, circumstances or stimuli that induce stress are known as “stressors”. These stressors could be physical or psychological.

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The demands that a stressor places on an individual must be excessive for stress to occur. However, what is excessive for one person may be absolutely tolerable for another person.


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