Stress is a major health concern. It affects our ability to work and carry on relationships, interrupts bodily functions and degrades both our physical and psycho-emotional well-being. Everyone experiences stress, but it becomes alarming when it manifests in your body as a constant, consistent state.
Here is a simple checklist to evaluate your stress levels. Diagnosis is the first step to cure, and being aware of your condition will indicate whether you are doing fine, or urgently need to wind down.
The Stress Test
Answer each question with a numerical value. Put down
- 1 if it does not apply to me at all
- 2 if it applies to me to some degree, or some of the time
- 3 if it applies to me to a considerable degree, or a good part of time
- 4 if it applies to me very much, or most of the time
Are you ready? Let’s start!
- I sleep at least eight hours a night, but I feel very tired in the morning.
- I experience frequent headaches, heartburn and muscle spasms.
- I am less energetic, and I get tired immediately after doing any effort.
- I have the inclination to use the toilet more than I used to a few years back.
- When someone talks to me, I am irritable and I can get angry easily.
- I am unable to focus on my tasks appropriately.
- My income is not adequate to meet basic expenses.
- I am unable to free up time for myself.
- I find myself perspiring abnormally, even when I should not.
- My eating habits have changed lately.
- I find it difficult to calm down once I get upset.
- I drink more than 3 cups of coffee every day.
Compute for your final score by adding up your answers for each item.
- A score of 12-23 points shows that you experience very low levels of stress, or are very effective at handling it. Your type tends to have a pleasant disposition and healthy self-esteem. Keep up the good work and spread positive energy as you go along.
- A score of 24-36 points shows moderate levels of stress. Depending on how close you are to either edge, you should determine and monitor the sources of your stress and make efforts to eliminate or evade them. Getting in shape and clearing your mind will aid in managing your anxiety.
- A score of 37-48 points indicates dangerously high exposure to stress factors. Whatever they are, they recur in doses heavy enough to sap your vitality and jeopardize your health, which could lead to serious ailments. Take a vacation, go to the spa and get a massage, attend a retreat, see a therapist or catch up with loved ones; do what you need to get yourself out of the red zone.