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What Causes Stress

Apr 20, 2022

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What Causes Stress

Stress is really a physical reaction to external and internal factors.  Therefore, any number of situations can cause stress, and what can lead to stress in one person’s life may have no affect whatsoever on someone else.  Some persons are stressed by driving in traffic, the birth of a child, getting married; going to college, going on vacation, getting a promotion at work, the list is virtually endless.  This simply goes to show that stress in life is inescapable. 

No one is quite sure what makes some persons more prone to stress than others, but there are several key stressors that have been identified.   Stress has been attributed to a number of different external and internal factors.  External factors might include work, children and family, fear of something dangerous, lifestyle, fatigue, and financial problems.  Internal factors can include pessimism and unrealistic expectations.

We will take a look at some of these below:

Children and Family:

Some persons are faced with pressure as a result of work or family.  In many cases family obligations, especially in terms of the expectations of a spouse, or the expectation of parents, can cause undue anxiety.


If you are faced with a situation that places you in harm’s way, then that can induce stress.  Your body’s reaction is to release hormones which can give you the energy you need to respond to the situation quickly and calmly, and if necessary fight off the danger.


Nowadays, it is the norm for persons to run from one task to another, without being able to stop for a moment to ‘smell the roses’ as they say.  Life can be hurried and intense.   If you are always on the go, and are not able to find time to rest, then that can lead to long-term stress. These days, almost everyone is busy doing several tasks at a time, whether at home, school, or at the office.


As a result of always being on the go, the body does not get the required rest.  Continuous activity, oftentimes without a break, will eventually build up and take a toll on your health.  When the body is fatigued, it can lead to both a physical and mental breakdown, and you become easily irritated and angry.


Some persons have a tendency to worry about things that they are not able to control or change, and even things that may never happen.  They always expect the worst outcome in any circumstance.  This level of pessimism leads to excessive internal pressure, which can lead to emotional problems.

Unrealistic Expectations:

Oftentimes people have unrealistic expectations of their family and friends, their jobs, and of themselves.  Inevitably, there will be some amount of stress because of these expectations not being met.  This is a very unhealthy way to live, and can lead to emotional turmoil and undue stress.

It is very clear that there are a number of factors that can lead to stress.  In addition, these factors vary from person to person.  If we accept the fact that life will never be stress free, we can adopt techniques to help us to deal with the issues in life that might cause stress.