21 Major Stressors


To reduce stress in one’s life one has to be able to understand the reasons for stress. Often these may be quite difficult to pinpoint. Here is a list of major stressors to help one identify the culprits for one’s stress. This helps in managing stress.

  1. Financial: Financial problems are one of the major reasons for stress. Persons unable to meet their financial requirements as well as those of their loved ones experience enormous stress. Loans and interest on loans are another major reason for financial stress. Unfulfilled expectations for financial remuneration, for work done or for one’s job also cause stress. Financial insecurity for the future is also a stressor. And one could even add greed for money as one reason for stress.
  2. Employment: Lack of employment as well as being underemployed, lack of stable employment, employment not measuring up to one’s qualifications or expectations, unreasonable working conditions are also reasons for stress.
  3. Work Pressure: People are often overloaded having to work for long hours under pressure to complete their work. In the modern world, many companies tend to overload their employees with too much work. This has a detrimental effect on their health.
  4. The Boss: Having a disagreeable boss is a huge reason for stress. With the bad job situation, people are unable to disagree with their bosses as well as they are unable to quit their jobs. As a result they are forced to tolerate working in bad conditions while often being treated badly. Somehow, some bosses allow themselves the perk of being unreasonable, rude, harsh, unappreciative, overbearing, and imposing; sometimes even bullying their workers as they exploit their position. This approach causes huge stress on the employees working under them. In some cases workers can have a bad time with unfair management.
  5. Employees or workers under you: Having employees and workers who are under qualified or irresponsible or who are not dedicated to their job. In today’s competitive environment one is often unable to get dedicated and qualified employees.
  6. Unethical practices: In today’s business environment a person is often forced into a position where he/she is forced to do actions that are unethical according to the standards of that individual, but in the current difficult job scenario, the employee is forced to tolerate such practices to retain one’s job having no other option as he/she has to fulfill their obligations to family and society.
  7. Bad Behavior: Improper and incorrect behavior by the boss or colleagues as well as by others in society. Problems and stress while interacting with certain individuals. Needless rudeness, cheap behavior, and roughness have for some reason grown in the 21st century as well as, good manners, politeness and etiquette are slowly fading in today’s modern world, instead being replaced more and more  by a culture that cannot be termed as culture any more.
  8. Physical insecurity: Insecurity in the workplace or while travelling from one’s residence to the workplace and while returning. Also for people who live in crime infested places or war zones.
  9. Health: Bad health is a major cause of stress, often caused by a bad lifestyle, incorrect diet, alcohol, drug abuse, incorrect medications, any sickness and poor health due to infections from partners, permanent viral infections, etc. Lack of access/ inadequate access to health care, insufficient medical insurance, escalating medical costs, inability to meet health care costs. Any major health problems, serious injury, incapacitation, terminal illnesses, etc.
  10. Divorce, Separation or Breakup with Partner: A major reason for stress is when one’s personal life does not work out and one fails on this front. It is a major reason for stress and often even depression. Heartbreak can often result in the person having lower work efficiency, decreased belief in one’s abilities, sometimes destructive emotions that lead to poor performance. Undoubtedly, a major cause of stress.
  11. Incompatible Partner: One of the major reasons for stress is an incompatible unsupportive partner. Divorce is not always a solution to this problem, however sometimes educating the partner and discussing things and expectations may help ease the situation.
  12. Lack of a regular and compatible Partner: Despite the electronics/internet age many persons are unable to locate a compatible partner and hence suffer from loneliness. This is a major stressor.
  13. Death of a loved one: Persons can feel very stressed when they lose a loved one, especially a partner, even if one knows and expects the event beforehand.
  14. Personal Relationships: Problems with partner, children, parents, in-laws or extended family can be a reason for stress.
  15. Chronically Ill relative (Child, parent, partner): The person undergoes stress due to the demands of time, energy, finance and care placed on the individual due to a chronically ill relative.
  16. Trauma: Childhood or otherwise, any such trauma places a huge stress on the individual. Cases such as child abuse, accidents, rape, etc.
  17. Family-Birth related: Inability to conceive, lack of partner when one desires a child, unwanted pregnancy, premature birth, complications during pregnancy, adoptions are some stressors.
  18. Too much interaction: Certain jobs demand a lot of interaction with numerous individuals. This creates a lot of friction and wears down the individual.
  19. Lack of Sleep: Certain individuals are unable to get adequate rest as they are overworked and have little time to rest. Inadequate rest is a major stressor.
  20. Improper and Inadequate Food: This is a major reason for stress as the body does not get adequate nutrition and thus work output, quality of decision making, efficiency, effectiveness of the individual are affected.
  21. Information Overload: Too much information is being shared and it often creates an overload leaving inadequate time for personal and work matters.

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