Controlling Stress and Anxiety


There’s no question that stress, and frequently anxiety, affects everyone regardless of age, sex, background, career, etc. And, oftentimes it’s easy to blame stress on external factors such as the annoying coworker, work overload, the slow driver in front of you or anything else that will absolve you of responsibility. But, let’s face it — you play a significant role in the amount of stress and anxiety you experience on a regular basis.

The answer to what is causing the stress in your life can be found in examining your personality, likes, dislikes and interactions with others. This is the key to controlling stress and anxiety. For example, if you are a perfectionist, you probably experience stress when you or other people don’t complete a task to your standards. Or, if you are a control-freak, you may get stressed when you have to delegate work to others. Perhaps you are the type of person who just can’t say no. As a result you take on more projects than you can really handle and this stresses you out.

As you can see from the examples above, you actually have control over some of the activities that are stressing you out. If you take time to evaluate how you react in certain situations you will begin to notice patterns in your behavior that contribute to feelings of anxiety. Once you are able to identify what causes you to stress, it will be much easier to resolve the problem. Whether you are a people-pleaser or a perfectionist, one of the best things you can do when you feel yourself tensing up is take a few minutes and breathe deeply. This invokes a sense of relaxation through your body, signaling that everything is okay.

Here are some general guidelines that you can follow for controlling stress and anxiety:

1. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. People may be afraid to ask for help for several reasons. They may not feel comfortable asking for help for fear of rejection, feeling stupid and incapable, or because they’re pride gets in the way. Instead of worrying about these things, remember that we are human and need help sometimes.

2. Focus on your accomplishments, not your shortcomings. Instead of focusing on how many things you didn’t accomplish today, think about all of the positive things that you did achieve. Appreciate even the simplest act like making someone smile.

3. Have more fun! It’s easy for stress to overwhelm and aggravate you. If you set aside time to spend with family and friends, to relax and to enjoy other fun activities, you won’t focus so much on stress and you’ll be happier overall.

Remember, taking time to evaluate your current situation will help you identify what is causing the stress in your life. Once you are aware of the stress triggers, you will be able to regain control and eliminate the stress to which you are contributing.

About the Author

Kaitlyn Bronson owns and maintains Stress Management Answers. For more tips on controlling stress and anxiety, visit

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