Stress blog

Take charge to conquer your stress

By Edward T. Creagan, M.D. November 3, 2010

Need more help?

If the stress in your life is more than you can cope with, get help right away.

  • National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
    1-800-273-TALK (8255)
  • Go to the nearest hospital or emergency room
  • Call your physician, health provider or clergy
  • National Alliance on Mental Illness
    1-800-950-NAMI (6264)

Almost every medical organization has a weekly lecture entitled, "Grand Rounds." Typically, this is a 45-minute lecture on some aspect of medicine or research. Last week, a fascinating colleague addressed the issue of stress.

My colleagues explained that stress reflects the "perfect storm" of three factors:

  • Limited resources. You don't have the strength or energy to get the job done. In other words, demand exceeds capacity.
  • Lack of control. You have no say in how you get the job done.
  • Absence of meaning or purpose. The novelist Tolstoy said that the quickest way to drive a man insane is to have him perform a job that has no purpose.

In his lecture, my colleague also shared some advice for dealing with stress. He emphasized the importance of taking charge. In other words, get rid of the victim mentality and put yourself in the driver's seat. This might be something as simple as watching your diet or getting a good night's sleep. Or it might be something far more complex, such as dealing with legal and financial matters, or dissolving a relationship that's become toxic.

These concepts can help you deal more effectively with stress. What else have you tried to conquer stress?


Edward T. Creagan, M.D.

Follow on Twitter: @EdwardCreagan

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6 Comments Posted

Nov. 03, 2010