Coping With Stress

Stress is most often thought of as a negative reaction to situations where the mind is overstimulated. From a psychological standpoint, there can be both eustress and distress. The former refers to that feeling of being spurred to higher levels of activity when many things happen at once. This is a positive thing that can help us to efficiently multi-task and get more done at once. The other version, distress, is what we most often consider. This is a side effect of the hectic lives that modern technology requires us to live. This essay looks at some of the methods that are often used to cope.

Temporary Physical Escape

When the information overload and the deadlines become too much to bear, it is not uncommon for people to attempt to leave their stressors behind temporarily so that they can gather their thoughts and calm down again. This can take the form of a vacation to a beautiful far away destination. In extreme cases it may even involve being institutionalized temporarily and heavily medicated. In either case, it is understood that the stressed person will eventually return to the original environment.

Temporary Virtual Escapism

Some people use fiction to make their daily troubles fade away. This can come in the form of books, television or movies which allow them to become immersed in the lives of characters. For a more complete immersion, there are also MMORPGs which allow players to assume characteristics that are as different as they like from those they actually espouse.

Altered States of Consciousness

Through meditation, prayer and in some cases drug use, people have successfully changed their mind-states and found ways to achieve relaxation after stressful days. Meditation is generally accepted as a healthy way to achieve this but drugs are often considered faster. They do however come with the additional issues of addiction.

Complete Removal

There are more and more cases recently of people dealing with the stressors of modern life by retreating from it completely. By deciding to no longer participate in the traditional economic system they are able to avoid jobs, spending and other stressful situations. While the life they adopt is not always easy, they do tend to be healthier with the additional physical activity.

The best method of coping with distress will vary from individual to individual. This essay only covers the methods generally and there are many more that can be abstracted from these.

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