Leaving home. Studying for final exams. Preparing for an athletic competition. Breaking up with a boyfriend or girlfriend. Working long nights—or not at all. Waiting in long security lines at the airport. Having children. Raising children. Struggling to meet the deadline to complete a textbook. Stress is inevitable. No one can prevent it. The best we can do is to minimize its harmful effects. Depending on the person and the stressor, people can cope by trying to solve the problem, talking to friends, inviting distractions, sleeping or drinking too much to escape, praying, brooding, venting, lashing out, laughing it off, getting out- side help, pretending that all is well—or freaking out. Combining all psycholog- ical theories and research, it appears that there are about 400 specific ways to cope with stress (Skinner et al., 2003). In a recent nationwide survey, men and women were asked about how they manage the stress in their lives.
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