Coping With Life Events And The Stress That Comes With Them


Life can be stressful at times, and there are particular life events that can wreak havoc on our lives. While many people rate divorce and moving house as the top two most stressful things you can go through in life, and there is no doubt that both of these things do cause a lot of stress and anxiety and anyone who has experienced either event will know that. However, moving house doesn’t make it into the Holmes And Rahe Stress Scale, which is a scale created by two psychiatrists Thomas Holmes and Richard Rahe which looked into whether or not stress contributes to illness. The study found that stress can cause severe health problems, and if life events cause stress, then at least you can do is to try and be one step ahead and try and avoid stress-related illness if you’re aware of what to look out for.

  • According to the stress scale, the most stressful life events are: 
  • Death of a spouse (or child*)
  • Divorce
  • Marital separation
  • Imprisonment
  • Death of a close family member
  • Personal injury or illness
  • Marriage
  • Dismissal from work
  • Marital reconciliation
  • Retirement

The majority of the above life events are unfortunately very sad, and there’s not much that you can do to avoid them. For example, if it’s your job to make funeral plans for someone, then it’s not something you can really get out of. There’s not really much you can do to make things easier for yourself either, but that doesn’t mean you should give up and because there are things that you do to help with your stress levels and to help you cope better and find life more manageable. Acknowledging your feelings is the first step because if you attempt to ignore the stress, it will certainly not help you to deal with it; in fact, it will only delay it and make it worse. Once you know that you’re feeling stressed, then you can begin to work through it. This doesn’t necessarily mean you have to do anything, sometimes doing nothing is just as effective. Try practicing meditation and mindfulness, to begin with as this is a great way to stay calm, to clear your head and help you to think straight.

Next, you probably need to seek support, which is far easier to do when your head is clearer, and you are more relaxed and thinking straight. Support can mean different things for different people and whatever it means for you, is what you need to do. It could be chatting to your family about what’s going on, hiring a cleaner to help you around the house if you just can’t face it or don’t have the time or it could be reading a book to get some advice. With any of these life events and stressful situations, you’ll find several self-help books on pretty much any topic so it’s a good idea to have a look for one which could help you. Remember that you are not the first to go through this, nor will you be the last, so stay strong, stay calm, and you will get through it.

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