A lock of fit between the perceived demands of the environment and the perceived ability to cope with those demands.
For example, some people overestimate the demands of exams and underestimate their ability to succeed. Consequently, they suffer stress and anxiety.
What causes stress?
Physical environment: noise, heat, amount of personal space.
Too much work to do or badly planned and organised work.
Not meeting deadlines.
Perceived lack of control.
Lack of sleep.
Too much alcohol.
Lack of exercise.
Being too much of a perfectionist.
How do we react to stress?
Physiological: increased heart rate and blood pressure, exhaustion.
Behavioural: withdrawal, anti-social, overworking to compensate, drink and eat too much.
Physchological: become irritable, depressed, anxious.
Why is stress a problem?
Once recent study by psychologists at Coventry University found that more than half of a sample of 'A' level students found exams very or extremely stressful. Many also reported loss of sleep and appetite, headaches, binge eating and drinking.
Stress self evidently causes anxiety.
Stress interferes with effective learning.
How to deal with stress
Plan and organise your work.
Work regularly and steadily.
Get fresh air and exercise.
Do not cut yourself off.
Eat regularly and sensibly.
Get plenty of sleep.
Have some fun.
Drink plenty of water to avoid dehydration.
Talk to parents, friends, teachers if things are getting you down.
Get academic work in perspective. It is not all there is to life!