10 Common Causes of Stress & How to Avoid Them

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Stress is a common part of life. It can range from a hectic job and utility bills to a chaotic family life just to mention a few. Sometimes, stress motivates you to do better than you are currently doing in life. More specifically, it helps you aim for certain goals. However, if stress goes unmanaged and it becomes long-term, then it can cause serious health issues. It can also interfere with your job and your family. Moreover, it can lead to the following effects.

  • Depression
  • Chest pain
  • Fatigue
  • Anxiety
  • Irritability

Broadly speaking, the causes of stress are outside forces or insidious problems sneaking into your life turning it upside down. Here is a highly specific breakdown of the common causes of stress in addition to how you can avoid them.

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1. Handling Too Many Things All At Once

It is probable that your life is full of work and nothing else. You probably want to finish it quickly, but it is impossible to do so. Handling all these things at the same time will stress you unnecessarily, not to forget the errors you will make as you attempt to handle them. When this kind of working pressure becomes your daily schedule, then you are likely to suffer from stress.

You can avoid this by living each minute as it comes and doing one task at a time. Start by clearing your desk of distractions, not by handling all the tasks but by completing one of them at a time. If you have emails to send, do it before working on the report. It is easy to get the urge to do other things in between one task, but with practice, you will get used to it.

2. Lack of Personal Confidence

Did you know that being too conscious of your personal appearance can lead to stress? Worrying about wrinkles, spots on your skin or any other part of your body that you see as imperfect can have a negative effect on how you view yourself. More specifically, it can cause self-esteem issues. You might opt for the life of a loner’s life because of such issues.

To overcome this type of stress, you need to start by first accepting yourself and acknowledging that no one is perfect. Then, work on the part of you that you feel you need to improve. For instance, if you are having a problem with your weight, you can start exercising until you get your desired body shape and weight.

3. Procrastination

Procrastination is common to all people but for different reasons. You can postpone doing something when you are feeling too overwhelmed, or something more important and urgent comes up. While procrastination is common, if you do it too much it is going to cause stress.

The best way to overcome this cause of stress is by planning your time well. Start working on any assignment immediately after you get it. Even if another one presents itself before you finish the first one, you will have cleared a significant part of it.

4. Abusive Relationships and Over Demanding Jobs

Sometimes the things that are meant to make you happy are the ones that cause you stress. For example, you may be in an abusive relationship whereby you have no freedom. You may also have an abusive boss who does not know how to appreciate you no matter how good your performance is.

If these are the sources of stress in your life, then making big changes such as walking away will be the best thing to do. It is better for you to quit a stressful job or relationship, which exposes yourself to a heart attack that will lead to an early death than for you to stay in such situations.

5. Inadequate Exercise

If you are working yourself hard and you never get time to relax, then both your mind and your body gets tired and they can easily shut down. Spare some time in your busy schedule for exercise.

Go to the gym or go for a run in your neighborhood. If taking some time off is still difficult, then consider walking to the bus stop in the morning and evening instead of driving to and from work.

6. Financial Worries

Loans, utility bills, and the need to live a comfortable life can easily stress you. Getting in a better financial situation can alleviate the likelihood of living a stressful but still, you can avoid this type of stress by living according to your standards.

7. Having Unrealistic Expectations

Sometimes expecting too much from people can lead to stress. Train yourself to understand that people are imperfect and they are likely to let you down from time to time.

Once you accept that, then it is unlikely that you will be stress-free when they actually fail to meet your expectations. You will also learn to have plan B just in case plan does not work out as well as you thought it would.

8. Sudden Life Changes

Significant changes in life such as marriage, divorce, pregnancy, or moving in a new place can lead to stress. You might have planned for the positive changes such as marriage, but negative ones such as death are unplanned for.

The only way to overcome them is by accepting things as they are. You can also seek professional counseling if you feel you cannot handle the change that occurred in your life.

9. Having Clutter in Your Home

You probably never knew this, but having a lot of useless stuff in your home occupies your personal space hence causing stress. In most cases, the clutter in your home is a representation of your feelings.

Taking at least 20 to 30 minutes of your time to de-clutter everything you no longer use can help you a lot. Once you finish de-cluttering, you will have a clean working or relaxing environment. Make it a regular thing, and you will find that you actually enjoy doing it.

10. Health Issues

Suffering from certain ailments such as chronic pains can lead to stress. It is ironic that this stress can also lead to serious health issues. To overcome stress brought by illnesses, talk to your doctor for help and adopt a healthy lifestyle.

Even though the disease has no cure, there is always a way to manage it. Such ways might even prolong your life.


Stress usually poses a negative impact on your life. When you are stressed, your body produces hormones to either fight or run from the stress. Whether you are suffering from long-term or short-term stress, your body will react, and you will note these changes. Try stress management. It will help you deal with these causes of stress.

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Additional Resources

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About the author

I'm an avid reader and love anything to do with mindfulness and mental health!

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Information on our website is for educational and informational purposes only. You should not rely on this information as a substitute, nor does it replace professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.

If you have any concerns or questions about your health, you should always consult with a mental healthcare professional.

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