Holmes and Rahe Stress Scale. How Stressed Are You?
It has been demonstrated consistently that stress takes its toll physically and emotionally in some rather serious ways over the years. So the big question is how stressed are you and what can you do about it? The starting place is to determine your stress level and Holmes and Rahe have developed a measuring tool that has gained significant credibility.
To measure stress according to the Holmes and Rahe Stress Scale, the number of “Life Change Units” that apply to events in the past year of an individual’s life are added and the final score will give a rough estimate of how stress affects health.
How stressed are you?
Life event 2 Life change units2 Death of a spouse 100 Divorce 73 Marital separation 65 Imprisonment 63 Death of a close family member 63 Personal injury or illness 53 Marriage 50 Dismissal from work 47 Marital reconciliation 45 Retirement 45 Change in health of family member 44 Pregnancy 40 Sexual difficulties 39 Gain a new family member 39 Business readjustment 39 Change in financial state 38 Death of a close friend 37 Change to different line of work 36 Change in frequency of arguments 35 Major mortgage 32 Foreclosure of mortgage or loan 30 Change in responsibilities at work 29 Child leaving home 29 Trouble with in-laws 29 Outstanding personal achievement 28 Spouse starts or stops work 26 Begin or end school 26 Change in living conditions 25 Revision of personal habits 24 Trouble with boss 23 Change in working hours or conditions 20 Change in residence 20 Change in schools 20 Change in recreation 19 Change in church activities 19 Change in social activities 18 Minor mortgage or loan 17 Change in sleeping habits 16 Change in number of family reunions 15 Change in eating habits 15 Vacation 13 Christmas 12 Minor violation of law 11
Score of 300+: At risk of illness.
Score of 150-299+: Risk of illness is moderate (reduced by 30% from the above risk).
Score 150-: Only have a slight risk of illness.
So, how did you do?
So, how stressed are you? If you answered the questions honestly, you may be surprised at your score. Some of you will shrug it off, saying to yourself that even though it’s high, you can get through it with no help and no mitigation. Some of you will say you’ll “worry about it later” and you continue the daily grind. (do you notice the word “worry there?) Some of you will throw up your hands and say nothing, fearing the worst. and taking on the martyr’s attitude. It is my hope that most of you will say, “Help me find ways to deal with it so I can have a full and happier life.”
But now you know the answer to “How stressed are you?” Let’s do something about it.
What can you do about it?
If you scored above 300 (or even above 200), I highly recommend:
- Seeking professional help to learn how to cope with and relieve stress
- Become a student of meditation.
- Assess your lifestyle and make significant changes in the stress-producing areas.
- Find ways to have fun
If you scored high on this test, PLEASE take it seriously and find ways that work for you to reduce the stress level. There is a time, perhaps later on, but there IS a time when the stress takes its toll and will show up in symptoms you really don’t want to have.
Some of us have been there, done that.