21st February 2014

Four actions that managers and leaders need to take to reduce growing pressure

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18th February 2014

From catastrophe to success

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  • Personal resilience and emotional intelligence – is there a link?

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  • When will organisations really take stress seriously?

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  • Manage stress and mental health to improve performance

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More articles ›

Causes of stress

Pressures can come from many different sources. If you are unable to identify them or handle them the might contribute to you suffering from stress. Even for those which you cannot control, you do have choice about your response to them. Recognising that you have control over this response, is empowering and can help you avoid becoming stressed.

Look at the list below and identify which relate to you. The list does not cover every source of pressure, but it may prompt you to identify others which affect you.


  • Job pressures and targets
  • Workload
  • Boss – their style and behaviour
  • Employees – their attitude and behaviour
  • Colleagues – relationships with them
  • Communication – or lack of
  • Lack of direction or goals
  • Lack of control over job
  • Work environment
  • Lack of support or training
  • Pressure to work long hours
  • Culture
  • Bullying
  • Changes to job
  • Threat of losing your job

Family / relationships

  • Problems in key relationship – arguing or not communicating
  • Arguments with children
  • Arguments with parents
  • Need to care for a family member (especially long-term)
  • Serious illness within the family
  • Concerns about behaviour of close family member
  • Dealing with an ex-partner or spouse
  • Dealing with step-children or partner’s children
  • No personal time or space
  • Death within the family


  • Home location
  • Neighbours
  • Moving house
  • Travel, especially commuting
  • Crowded environment
  • Noise
  • Pollution of other sorts
  • Crime threat
  • Threat (eg concerns about violence)

Self (internal thoughts) / lifestyle

  • Ambitions and aspiration
  • Financial pressures to maintain lifestyle
  • Debt worries
  • Personal relationships
  • Keeping up with friends
  • Peer group
  • Social life
  • General mood
  • Lack of fitness
  • Diet
  • Smoking and/or drinking
  • No time for self
  • No relaxation time
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