Stress Management Causes

We all experience some stress in our daily lives. While you can’t entirely get rid of everything that causes stress, recognizing your everyday stressors is the first step toward lowering your stress levels. Learn how you may be able to eliminate common causes of stress, including stress at work and stress from relationships.

Common Causes of Stress at Work

Work is one of the most universal causes of stress. Here are some situations that are likely to cause stress at work:

  • A lack of information regarding procedure or policy changes can make employees feel insecure about their responsibilities and careers.
  • Bullying or harassment can cause fear, anger and stress in almost everyone.
  • High workloads and unrealistic deadlines can make employees feel overwhelmed, rushed and pressured.
  • Micro-management can make employees feel uncomfortable and discouraged to contribute ideas or suggestions.
  • Multiple managers, each with their own priorities, can overwhelm employees, causing confusion and frustration.
  • Not enough work can make employees feel bored and frustrated or concerned about their job security.
  • Unpleasant physical conditions, such as poor lighting, uncomfortable seating or an environment that is too hot, cold or noisy can lead to stress.
  • Weak management can leave employees without a sense of direction.

Reducing Stress at Work

Although it’s impossible to completely eliminate stress at work, the following strategies may help you get more enjoyment from your job:

  • Arrange your schedule to balance work, home, family and friends.
  • Avoid over-scheduling and commit only to what you can do without feeling rushed.
  • Break projects into small steps that don’t overwhelm you.
  • Delegate some responsibilities to others.
  • Have lunch away from your desk.
  • Leave a few minutes earlier in the morning to avoid the stress of rushing.
  • Prioritize your responsibilities.
  • Take regular breaks to clear your mind, even if just for a few deep breaths.

Stress from Relationships

While a loving relationship often helps to ease stress, even the best of relationships can experience tension. Common causes of stress from relationships include:

  • Being intolerant of each other’s feelings, thoughts and values
  • Being overly dependent or interdependent
  • Disagreeing about finances
  • Engaging in power struggles
  • Having difficulty communicating
  • Having unrealistic expectations
  • Putting off asking for help when you need it
  • Wanting to change the other person.

To reduce stress from relationships, start by taking responsibility for your own happiness. Communicate your feelings clearly and without anger and listen without judgment. Don’t attempt to resolve misunderstandings when you or your loved one is hungry, tired or upset. Lastly, stay focused on the wonderful qualities that drew you to your partner in the first place. These general tips also apply to relationships in the workplace.


BusinessLink. (n.d.). Common causes of stress at work. Retrieved October 4, 2010, from