3 Kinds of Workplace Stress

Workers across America will tell you that stress

levels are increasing. The demand for anti-

depressants is up. Doctor's visits are

increasing. Stress-related ailments are shooting

up like a rocket.

There are many stressors behind all these

problems, but the gurus generally classify the

stress itself into three categories.

Understanding the major types is the first step to

controlling stress and improving productivity.

1. Acute Stress. This kind of stress is caused

by recent events. It is significant but

temporary. Small doses can result in positive

reactions: the adrenalin rush and feelings of

elation can motivate achievement. Too much, too

often results in headaches, backaches, upset

stomach, and other tension-related responses.

2. Episodic Acute Stress. This type stress is

caused by frequent exposure to stressors. These

people are generally over committed, lack the time

and ability to accomplish everything, and they

often find themselves at odds with coworkers.

This is much more serious than the first kind.

Irritability turns to anger, occasional tension

headaches become frequent migraines, heart

palpitations lead to chest pain, and high anxiety

becomes a way of life.

3. The third category is chronic stress. This is

related to the others but carries none of the

thrill or adrenalin rush found with acute stress.

The long-term nature of chronic stress is such

that people actually become accustomed to the

stressors and accept them as a way of life; they

see no escape from poverty, job mismatches,

abusive situations, or physical hardships.

What kind of stress do you observe in your

workplace? Are some of your people plagued with

tension headaches and back aches? Are some of

them even more stressed, displaying anger and

migraines? Or, do you have some people who are so

far over the edge that they have basically given

up hope as characterized by chronic stress?

How much is all of this costing your company? Good

leaders recognize the effects of stress and

understand that it costs a lot in medical

benefits, insurance costs, absenteeism, workers

comp, accidents, quality, productivity, and


Find out more about the effects of workplace

stress and specific ways to overcome this drain on

American business. Send email to

[email protected]

You'll receive a 3-session e-Workshop about some

of the top 10 causes of workplace stress. You can

control stress in your workplace and turn all that

energy into productive activity. Your workplace

can be both pleasant and profitable.

Dale Collie - professional speaker, former US Army Ranger, CEO, and a Fast Company top 50 innovative leader. Author of "Winning Under Fire." (McGraw-Hill) [email protected]

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