Y178 Ema

ECA - Task 1

Stress has been defined as ‘the adverse reaction people have to excessive pressure or other types of demand placed on them’.   (Finlay et al., 2010 page 141).   It can affect everyone at some stage and is part of everyday life.   Whilst moderate stress can help people react more quickly   ‘prolonged or excessive levels give people no time to recover their strength, and this can lead to exhaustion, depression and physical illness.’   (Finlay et al., 2010 page 142).   There are many factors that may contribute to stress and a variety of interventions that can tackle it. This essay is primarily concerned with debating the effectiveness of a stress management course as an intervention, and for illustration, I will be referring to the case study of Steve who is being sent on a stress management course by his boss.   After establishing what level of intervention this constitutes, I will identify the influencing factors involved at this level, and will debate the limitations of a stress management course alone as an intervention, drawing on other influences which can also contribute to stress.   (Finlay et al., 2010).

Steve is married with 2 children, he works in Information Technology and has recently moved house.   For a variety of reasons, Steve is suffering from high levels of stress and he has agreed to go on a stress management course.   A stress management course is a psychological intervention at the level of the individual, designed to help Steve to reduce his stress.   Both psychological and biological factors contribute to Steve’s stress at this level.   Steve has a meticulous personality and he has got into the habit of working long hours to complete his work.   He doesn’t feel that he has time to take lunch breaks or computer breaks.   Steve worries a lot about the health of his father who suffers from Coronary Heart Disease (CHD), he is understandably concerned that he may have inherited a predisposition for CHD, which ‘is the single most common...