The web browser you are using will no longer be supported by Cigna.com. To continue accessing the site without interruption, please upgrade your browser to the most recent version.
How Do You Cope With Stress?

How Do You Cope With Stress?

[en Español]

How Do You Cope With Stress?

Topic Overview

There are many ways to deal with stress. The table below (reprinted from Wellness: Concepts and Applications*) lists positive ways to cope. See how many you use to deal with stress. If you have trouble filling out this chart, you may want to track your stress for a few days and then try again.

Positive ways to cope

Often

Rarely

Not at all

Listen to music







Go shopping with a friend







Watch television, go to a movie







Read a newspaper, magazine, book







Sit alone in the peaceful outdoors







Write prose or poetry







Attend an athletic event, play, lecture, symphony







Go for a walk or drive







Exercise (swim, bike, jog)







Get deeply involved in some other activity







Play with a pet







Take a nap







Get outdoors, enjoy nature







Write in a journal







Practice deep breathing, meditation, autogenics, or muscle relaxation







Straighten up your desk or work area







Take a bath or shower







Do physical work (garden, paint)







Make home repairs or refinish furniture







Buy something (records, books)







Play a game (chess, backgammon, video games)







Pray, go to church







Discuss situations with a spouse or close friend







Other:







Now see if you use any of these negative ways to deal with stress.

Negative ways to cope

Often

Rarely

Not at all

Become aggressive







Use negative self-talk







Yell at spouse, kids, or friends







Drink a lot of coffee or tea







Get drunk







Swear







Take a tranquilizing drug







Avoid social contact with others







Try to anticipate the worst possible outcomes







Think about suicide







Smoke tobacco







Chew your fingernails







Overeat or undereat







Become irritable or short-tempered







Cry excessively







Kick something or throw something







Drive fast in your car







Other:







Scoring Instructions: Count the number of positive and negative coping techniques you use.

Number of positive techniques: _______

Number of negative techniques: _______

How often do you use negative coping strategies? ____________________

Do you use more positive than negative strategies or the reverse? ________________________

Do you recognize a need to change some of the techniques you are now using? If so, which ones? ___________________________________

What are some ways in which you can maximize your use of positive coping techniques? How can you minimize your negative ones? _______________

Used with permission: Anspaugh DJ, et al. (2009). Wellness: Concepts and Applications, 7th ed. © The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

Credits

Current as of: December 15, 2019

Author: Healthwise Staff

Medical Review: Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine

Christine R. Maldonado, PhD - Behavioral Health