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Measuring Your Stress Level

If you've been wondering what degree of stress you live under, here is a quick way to get a fair estimate. Dr. Thomas and Dr. Richard Rahe composed a table of events and the amount of stress they cause. The most interesting feature of this table is that the people they interviewed actually told them, how they could rate specific events for the stress they cause, so this is human rather than a medical appraisal of the degree of stress those events caused As you get used to certain changes in your life, they become less stressful, so these ratings will not be entirely accurate for you. If, for example, you take a vacation only every five years, you might rate it a 25 instead of a 13. The common starting point used was a standard rate of 50 for marriage for all the people interviewed.

The combined total of both positive and negative stresses in the past few months will give you an idea of your current stress level. Keep in mind that people have varying stress-handling capacities and this table does not take into account such regular stresses as recreational drug use, alcoholism, chronic illness, allergy, battering and random stresses such as car accidents, contest winning to the dreaded tax audit. This is presented as information only and should not be used for diagnostic or treatment purposes.

EVENT

Death of spouse100
Divorce73
Marital separation65
Jail term63
Death of a close family member63
Personal Injury or illness53
Marriage50
Fired at work47
Marital reconciliation45
Retirement45
Change In health of family member44
Pregnancy40
Sexual difficulties39
Addition of new family member39
Business of adjustment39
Change in financial status38
Death of a close friend37
Change to different line of work36
Change in number of arguments with spouse35
Mortgage over $10,00031
Foreclosure of mortgage or loan30
Change in job responsibilities29
Son or daughter leaving home29
Trouble with in-laws29
Outstanding personal achievement28
Wife or husband begins or stops work26
Beginning or end of school26
Change in living conditions25
Revision of personal habits24
Trouble with boss23
Change in work hours or conditions20
Change in residence20
Change in school20
Change in recreational activities19
Change in church activities19
Mortgage or loan under $10,00017
Change in sleeping habits16
Change in number of family get-togethers15
Change in eating habits15
Vacation13
Christmas12
Minor violations of the law11


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