Is there a variation in stress patterns due to different causes? I mean does work-related stress have different symptoms from stress caused by private problems? What are the main causes of stress?
That is really hard to say, the body reacts in each instance in the same way, so I don’t think there is a variation due to different causes. There is a person-to-person difference as everyone responds in a very distinctive manner and these differences are shaped by age, gender, genetics, experience and habits.
The main causes of stress are taking on too much personal, social and work pressure. In a culture where doing nothing is seen as a something strange, stress is the outcome.
I can illustrate this with an example straight from my practice: I had a client who needed some help with accumulated tension in the neck and shoulders. On her second visit she told me straight away that she didn’t have the time to practice the breathing exercises I suggested to her so that she could help herself.
So I asked her if she had colleagues who smoke. She had, so I asked her “why don’t you go out with them to take some fresh air a couple of times a day?” Her answer baffled me: “Oh no, I can’t do that, what would they think of me doing nothing?” And at the same time she realized she would feel guilty for taking a couple of minutes from her work for the sake of her health.
Based on your experience and expertise is the stress syndrome more usual in certain categories such as women vs. men, young vs. old people, thin or over-weight people, etc.? How about different nationalities and religions – for example are Australians more relaxed than the Japanese? Do Buddhists get stressed about anything – or are these stereotypes a myth?
Stress can happen to everyone. However, there are cultures that are less prone to it.
A lot, actually, depends on the person’s environment, mindset and way of living. A very active business person who practices daily relaxation exercises, does a bit of low impact sport, has a good team around him/her, has social support at home and has a good work life balance will probably not be affected.
A practicing Buddhist who has no social support and whose environment is constantly challenging him/her, probably will feel the effects of stress building up.
I was quite impressed at your presentation when you talked about the “recovery time” and the mental persuasion of humans who think there will not be any consequences when they try to do more than what is physically possible.
Has this society lost the lesson from the Seneca about the balance between otium (leisure time) and negotium (business)” or the one by Bertrand Russell “In Praise of Idleness and Other Essays”: is idleness no longer affordable in our society?
We’ve lost our connection with nature and with time. These days it is possible to be online 24/7 as time is not defined by the sun and the moon cycle anymore but by technology.
My presentations are about bringing our awareness back to the fundamentals of how your body works, is this what your body needs and what health entails.
Stress is regulated by our body’s autonomic nervous system. That system has two branches: