Stress & Character: what's your type?
Introversion: the things that cause stress and anxiety vary from person to person. It follows that the triggers for stress also vary. It's very common to find those disposed to introversion to be anxious. Sometimes anxiety is the cause of the introversion but not always. Introverts tend to occupy smaller worlds and dislike being the center of attention. They often have one or two people they can call a friend, but their social circle is constrained and predicable. This makes the introvert feel comfortable and because of this triggers for anxiety tend to be those things conflict with their predictable pattern of life.
The Over-Controlled Type: The pace and volume of work these days is tremendous. Many people develop a style of work that can accommodate these needs but the dilemma is their system may be quite fragile. People who are very conscientious tend to find that disruption in the form of poor support, or changing deadlines, or machinery breaking down, causes them a high level of stress. Not uncommonly, their solution to unforseen circumstances or poor support is to own more work. This way, the results are to a standard they prefer. This is a form of over-control that is a red flag for stress. People who fall into this camp tend not to complain, delegate, take time off sick, or cause any ripples. On the outside they may appear calm and controlled but inside they are reaping the consequences of internalized stress. They get headaches, stomach upsets and find themselves becoming more edgy and nervous.
The Under-Recognized Type: There are plenty of jobs that require years of hard work, education and training. The rewards for such work may be stress, long hours and lack of recognition. What began as a passion begins to turn sour as the person takes on a more cynical perspective. They begin to wonder what all their hard work has brought them to? Maybe they feel unsupported and vulnerable in the job they do. They start to grumble, pick faults in the system, feel increasing irritated and angry. Their negative thinking and pessimism are also manifestations of anxiety and depression.
The Under-Stimulated Type: As much as some people thrive in a world of predicability others find it mind-numbing. Understimulation can be as bad as overstimulation. For some people the boredom of a repetitive daily job, with no prospect of change is a living hell. People this understimulated may turn to other things to put a little zing into their lives. This can be anything from gambling, to drinking alcohol, using drugs, promiscuity, dangerous sports, fast driving, in fact anything that detracts from their sense of feeling trapped.
Although these examples differ, the common thread is imbalance. Recognising that you might fall into one of these categories is a first step in protecting yourself against stress. Making small changes based on that realisation is the next step, and so on until your life achieves more of a balance.