Addressing the causes of stress 

  1. Identify what is contributing to the stress: Make a list of the things that are worrying you or talk it over with someone you trust to identify the main causes of stress.
  2. Manage your time as well as you can: List the things you need to do, prioritising the important ones. Don’t skip your breaks; Try not to agree to take on more than you can manage, share your workload where possible or ask for help if you need it.
  3. Address the problem: Look at the problem solving cycle below. First identify the problem itself and then work through each step.

Step #1: What is the problem?

  • Define the problem clearly and simply
  • Try to be objective and specific, describe the problem by what you can observe rather than subjective feelings

Step #2: Gather information

  • What are all the factors involved?
  • How does the problem involve or affect others?
  • What contributes to the problem?
  • What keeps the problem going?
  • Is there anything that gets in the way of solving the problem (e.g. hopelessness, grief, motivation)?

Step #3: Redefine the problem

  • After gathering all of the information the problem may look different
  • What is the situation now?
  • What would you like it to be?

Step #4: Generate possible solutions

  • What have you tried so far?
  • What have other people tried in this situation?
  • Brainstorm all and any solutions

Step #5: Choose the best solution

  • Think forward... list the consequences / barriers / obstacles for each potential solution
  • Do you still need more information?
  • Choose the best option

Step #6: Plan your action

  • Do you need help from anyone?
  • Make a step-by-step plan of action – what, when, who, where & how…
  • Implement the plan

Step #7: Review and refine

  • Is it working?
  • What is working?
  • What is not working?
  • What do you need to adjust in the plan?
  • Do you need to get more information or manage any blocks?