How differently men and women cope with stress at work? Assignment

How differently men and women cope with stress at work? Assignment Words: 4217

There are many factors that can negatively affect people, and the probability to face some tense situations there is very high. In our research project we are trying to show how differently women and men deal with stress at work. In general men and women are different in a number of ways in life naturally such as they talk differently, they act differently, and as well as they behave differently. For the purpose of our research it is going to find out how women manage to handle with stress better and quicker in comparison with men.

Based on the above assumptions there has been set the following hypothesis that women cope with stress at work better than men. The aim of our research is to define how people eel with stress at work and to make comparisons in differences between men and women, if there are any. The paper has been conducted using the methods of survey (questionnaire). The paper consists of five parts. Introduction gives background information about the whole research. The second chapter of our work, under the title “How differently men and women cope with stress at work”, includes both theoretical and practical parts.

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The theoretical part called “Difference in behavior of men and women in stressful working atmosphere” focuses on the description of the term “stress”, its types, and ways of handling it. The next part called “Evaluation of the behavior of men and women in stressful situations at work” concentrates on the survey design, procedure, participants and findings. Conclusion contains a summary of the research findings and contribution, recommendations, based on our results and prospects for the future research. The list of references helps to identify the literature we have used in our project.

The final part of our work is called “Appendices”, which includes diagrams, bar charts of the questionnaire. 2. 1 . Differences in behavior of men and women in working atmosphere 2. 1 Concept f stress Stress is a part of our life, which is resulted by our busy lifestyle. This is cause by changing situations that person face. First of all, let’s define what the word “stress” exactly means. In the Oxford dictionary (2006) it is determined as pressure or tension exerted on a material object the degree of stress measured in units of force per unit area. State of mental or emotional strain or tension resulting from adverse or demanding circumstances particular emphasis or importance (Para. L). According to these definitions, stress treats psychological and physical sides of our lath. Nevertheless, Sincere posited that the stress response can be considered “as a general common component in all the emotions, the general adaptation syndrome” (Para 2). Also Sincere Sarah in What is Stress? (2012) overstated that: Negative stress are actually about stress that are beyond one’s control. This bad impact of severe stress is often manifested in physical and mental signs and symptoms.

However, when we are only exposed to mild or moderate stress, we are actually able to experience the good side of stress, which include improved creativity, earning, efficiency at work and, eventually, a higher level of self-esteem that could lead us to be able to withstand a higher stress levels in the future (p. 41 5). Jeremy Strands (2005) pointed out that stress appears and arises from the boring or uninteresting work terms or poor physical working environment, working alone and continuous pressure of work load and harassment from the top level to meet the deadlines of the Job(p. 35).

To sum up, the term stress mentions to an internal condition, which results from frustrating or annoying state. 2. 2 How man cope with stress Males are supposed to be a strong part of human beings. Their organism and its reaction on outside stresses and irritants are differ from that of males. Scientists claim that men handle stress differently. For example: Semolina (2006) criticized that stress is the main driving force leading to gastric ulcer and infarct among male population. She also argued that the best anti-stressful way is to lose oneself in work, which requires lots of physical activity and energy.

It is noticed that men do not tend to the open expression of feelings, especially negative ones. Therefore, when a man s upset, he usually will not talk about what bothers him. He does not want to burden others with his problems, except when he realizes that he really needs help. A man is usually withdrawn in itself and seeks solitude to think about his problem and find a solution. According to Shelley Taylor in Behavioral responses to stress in females: Tend-and-befriend, not fight-or-flight (2000) “men and women have quite different biological and behavioral reactions to stress” (412).

Shelley Taylor et. Al. (2000) found that: The human stress response has been characterized, both physiologically and behaviorally, as “fight-or-flight. Although fight-or-flight may characterize the primary physiological responses to stress for both males and females, we propose that, behaviorally, females’ responses are more marked by a pattern of “tend-and- befriend. ” Tending involves nurtured activities designed to protect the self and offspring that promote safety and reduce distress; befriending is the creation and maintenance of social networks that may aid in this process. P. 41 5) Men, however, have high levels of testosterone during stress, which blocks the calming effects of extinction and causes hostility, withdrawal, and anger. So, the difference in the behavior of men in stressful situations is in the existence of hormones such testosterone and extinction, which has a calming effect during stress. Stress is an integral part of the life of a modern woman. Since ancient times the woman was a home keeper and brought up the children, and a man in his turn was the breadwinner. But times have changed and now the woman must combine these activities.

Because of the peculiarities of the physiological and psychological structure, women cope with stress in a different way. Researchers stands that women handle stress in a unique way. One of the studies of Taylor et al. 2008) showed that mothers when they came home to their family after a stressful day at work coping with a bad day at work focus her attention on her children and their needs. Although, they tend to find support from their spouses, relatives or from their female friends telling them about their problems and feelings. For instance, Sotto et. Al. N Coping with Stress (2010) found that: The death of a spouse is thought to be the worst cause of stress that people can face. Women who had close friends and confidantes were more likely to survive the experience without a negative effect on their health or leaning of vitality (Para 7). It is a short description of how women handle stress from the psychological side. Many researches and studies confirm that women react in a unique way to stressful situations due to some peculiarities in the physiological Women’s bodies make chemicals that are believed to promote these structure. Responses.

According to Shelley Taylor (2008) one of these chemicals is extinction (ask- see-toe-sin), which has a calming effect during stress, and women have the hormone estrogen, which boosts the effects of extinction (p. 416). The researchers’ theory merits attention to the fact that “animals and people with high levels of extinction are calmer, more relaxed, more social, and less anxious” (p. 415). This implies that women are psychologically resistant to critical situations. Moreover, in The Life and the Health of Woman Semolina (2006) stated that women are guided by intuition in choosing the most convenient anti-stressful way in their daily activities.

It follows that woman are subconsciously trying to avoid stress. All these facts clearly show how women react and cope to stress in their daily life. 2. 1. 4. Comparison: identifying similarities and differences It is belief that gender is crucial fact in determining behavior of people. Men and women do not only communicate differently but they think, feel, perceive, react, respond, love, need, and appreciate differently. There are many factors contributing to this. For example, Gray, J. 2004) explains that men feel best in solving difficult situation because of their nature. It shows that men deal with stress by solving problems, rather than women, who have a differ strategy. Also the author claims that men have ability to turn off the left side of their brains by ignoring problems when solutions can’t be found. Unfortunately, women can’t leave the left side of the brain. The whole brain is functioning for women in a different way for man. In addition, men and women have quite different biological and behavioral reactions to stress. As Taylor et. L. (2008) overstated while men often react to stress in the fight or flight response, women often have another kind of reaction , their response, which is similar in other species as well, could be called “tend and befriend” (p. 41 5). Scientists pointed out that during the stress the level of testosterone in the men’s body increases that blocks the effects of extinction. In comparison with men, women also have the hormone estrogen, which boosts the effects of extinction. In terms of everyday behavior, in Stress at Work: Management and Prevention Strand, J. 2005) found that women are far more likely than men to seek social contact when they are feeling stressed (p. 525). They may phone relatives or friends, or ask directions if they are lost. This difference in seeking social support is one of the most basic differences between men’s and women’s behavior. SST. Claire et. Al. In Coffee helps women cope with stressful meetings but has the opposite effect on men (2010) had uncovered an unexpected sex difference: For two men collaborating or negotiating under stressful circumstances, caffeine consumption was bad news, undermining their performance and confidence.

By contrast, for pairs of women, drinking caffeine often had a beneficial effect on these same factors. The researchers can’t be sure, but they think the differential effect of caffeine on men and women may have to do with the fact that women tend to respond to stress in a collaborative, mutually protective style (known as tend and befriend’) whereas men usually exhibit a fight or flight response. (p. 2) The author considered that caffeine makes a bigger impact on men than women.

The differences in responding to stress may explain the fact that women have a lower incidence of stress-related disorders such as hypertension, aggressive behavior, or alcohol and drug abuse. The tend-and-befriend regulatory system may protect women against stress, and this may explain why women on average live about seven and half years longer than men. Major life events, physical problems, people age can cause stress at work for both women and men.

For instance: The death of a spouse, Accidents, Ailments such as arthritis that cause pain ND disability, Life-threatening illnesses such as heart disease and cancer, Unpleasant side effects from medications and other treatments, Sleep disturbances. In conclusion, women and men are very different not only in their thinking, feelings, reaction, but also in their behavior in stressful situations. There are many factors that can prove this, such as their nature, hormones, response to stress and others. . 1. 4. Summary So it may be concluded that stress is a parcel part of our lifestyle, physical reaction of our organism on exogenous pressure. It is a kind of protective reaction of the human body. The way how people react to stress and how they cope with it mainly depends on such factor as gender. Men prefer physical loading in order to handle stress and they become reserved and closed. Women’s behavior is marked by a pattern of “tend-and-befriend” that helps them to be more stress tolerant.

The main differences in the behavior of men and women in stress situations at work is in the biological and psychological factors. In biological terms there are differences in hormones that help cope with stress: in male organism is testosterone and in female organism is estrogen. That’s why women are far more likely than men to seek social intact when they are feeling stressed. This difference in seeking social support is one of the most basic differences between men’s and women’s behavior. To sum up there is a huge difference in behavior of men and women in stressful situations at work. 2. 2. 1.

Research design For our survey we have chosen a questionnaire to ask more people and as a result get more generalized information about difference in behavior of men and women in stressful situations at work. Research used five types of questions to generate quantitative and qualitative data from about 30 respondents: about 10 dents of KEPT (people we know), who started working, 10 elder people, whose work in different spheres and who teach us, and 10 employees of KEPT dormitory. Respondents were divided by gender (1 5/1 5), and divided into 3 different categories by age: from 18 to 25 (5/5), from 25 to 40 (5/5), from 40 and higher (5/5).

In questionnaire we would like to learn spheres of stressful situation; types, location, reason, the difference between men and women in stressful situation, if there is a difference between in young and elder situation. One more focus was on how differently men and women cope with stress and derive recommend on them. . 2. 2. Analysis In this chapter, presented the data gathered from the respondents. There given results that have been statistically processed. According to Figure 1. 1 more women loves than Jobs than men, but the tendency is actually the same. About 73 % of females love their Jobs, and 27% have negative attitude to a Job.

For males the numbers were the following 67% of all respondents love their Jobs, and the rest part doesn’t (33%). (See Appendix 1) Figure 1. 2 shows the main reasons why men and women chose their Jobs. Because of their preferences and skills chose the Job 60% of women and only 40% of men. 0 % of males and no females chose their Jobs because of some circumstances such as parent’s decision, family business or others. The equal number of men and women chose the sphere because of high salary and easy to find the place (27%). 13 % both of women and men have not got other alternatives.

The next diagram demonstrates how that respondents face of stressful situations at work (See Figure 1. 3. 1 in Appendix 1). Women are more likely to report physical and emotional symptoms of stress than men, such as irritability or anger (60 percent vs.. 53 percent), fatigue (53 percent vs.. 47 percent), feeling nervous or anxious (47 percent vs.. 0 percent), having headache (67 percent vs.. 53 percent), feeling depressed (40 percent vs.. 20 percent), having felt as though they could cry (26 percent vs.. 7 percent), or having had an upset stomach or indigestion (27 percent vs.. Percent). 47 % of males report that they feel lack of interest, motivation or energy in their work, the percentage of females is 40%. Moreover, 33% of male respondents have muscular tension and only 27 % of females have it. The equal number of men and women (13%) noticed the change in appetite. Figure 1. 3. 1 and Figure 1. 3. 2 shows that these things are more typical for people of an age from 40 and higher tooth for women and men. One of the questions was what they do to overcome stress at work. Men and women say they manage their stress in different ways.

In general, though, they both tend to choose sedentary activities like reading, listening to music and watching television to manage their stress. According to the bar chart 1. 4 women are far more likely than men to say they get a massage to manage stress (53 percent vs.. 20 percent for men) and overall, tend to report more stress management activities that connect them with other people, like spending time with friends or family (53 recent vs.. 46 percent) and nap (40 percent vs.. 27 percent for men). In comparison with women, men are more likely to say they do nothing (27 percent vs.. O percent) and smoke (40 percent vs.. 7 percent) as a way of managing stress. They are also more likely than women to say they drink alcohol (13 percent vs.. O percent) and play video games or surf the Internet (33 percent vs.. 13 percent) to manage their stress. Also we can see from the diagram that women are more likely than men to report that they watch television or movies as a way of managing stress (40 percent vs.. 27 percent). Significantly that equal amount of women and men exercise or walk (47 percent), eat (27 percent) and read (40 percent) to manage stress. In 5th question we asked our respondents about amount of hours they spend on work at home. Diagram 1. Shows that most men have not work at home (67 percent). The amount of men who spend on work at home less than 2 hours or 2-4 hours is equal (13 percent). Also number of men who spend 4-6 hours on work at home is not so significant, it is only 7 percent. According to figure 1. 5 women are far more likely than men to spend time working at home. We see a considerable percentage of women who do work assignments at home 4-6 hours (27 percent vs.. 7 percent for men). It should be noticed that only women spend more than 6 hours on work at home (13 percent vs.. O percent). Figure 1. 6 shows opinion of men and women about atmosphere at their work.

Significant amount of men determine atmosphere at their work as normal (47 % vs.. 26 % for women). Also more than 30 % of male respondents, especially men who is younger than 25, describe work atmosphere as very friendly. But only 13 % of women have the same opinion as men. By contrast of men most of female exponents say that the atmosphere at their work is friendly (47 % vs.. 13 % for men). Also a little amount of women find their work atmosphere as frustrating (7 % vs.. O % for men). Male respondents who are older than 40 have opinion that the atmosphere at their work is a little bit tensed (20%, see figure 1. . 1). In case of women percentage is the same, but the age is from 25 to 40. Also only middle-aged women find work atmosphere as frustrating (20 %). In 7th question we asked our respondents about What is more important for them at work? Then asked to rank all those by importance order from 1 downwards. Figure 1. 7. 1 shows that friendly atmosphere is more important for men at work ( 9 respondents). As the second most important is the interaction (5 respondents). Equally important is individual work (6 respondents) and silence (4 respondents). On the 5th place is team work (5 respondents).

Men prefer individual work than team work. For women (figure 1 . 7. 2) the most important at work friendly atmosphere (8 respondents), then silence (4 respondents) and interaction. Less important for women team work and a strong hierarchy. Most important at work for women as for men friendly atmosphere (8 respondents), then lenience and interaction. In comparison with men, women prefer silence. In the next question we have asked if men/women have problems associated with the stress at work kept you awake at night. According to the figure 1. 8. 2, 67% of women choose answer “no” and only 33% answered “yes”.

In accordance with figure 1. 8. 1 (67%) men answered “yes” and only 5 (33%) answered “no”. In general, the majority of respondents answered that they haven’t problem associated with stress at night. According to the figure 1. 9. 1 and 1. 9. 2 , women reported more that stress affect their health than men do. We see a considerable percentage of women who think that stress connected with work impacts on health (60% vs.. 53 % for men). It should be noticed that majority of women handle stress quickly to not to harm your health. In question 11 we wanted to find out how often people feel stressed at work.

The results have shown that, actually, stress is common thing at work, meaning that not very often, nor rarely. The highest percentage of stressed people is noticed among middle-aged male persons (from 25 to 40). 5 people out of 15 answered that they experience some stressful situations. Surprisingly, data showed that the most stressed segment of the female population is also middle-aged. If we take into consideration all the participants, then, according to the Figure 1. 11 the proportions are pretty the same in each option. The question 11 defined decision-making skills among the population.

Each participant was asked whether it is easy for him/her make any important decisions or not. The results are following (Figure 1. 11): 10 out of 15 people both among men and women answered miss”. The difference is only in the age. Middle-aged male population is found to be “important-decision-easy-makers”, hill beautiful part of humanity showed that young generation can take a responsibility in solving important decisions. Question 12 was one of the most interesting, because, our goal was to determine main stresses which create negative feelings at work. According to the Figure 1. 12. Men of all the ages feel unreasonable demand from authority, which causes stressful conditions. “Working conditions” take the second place in the hierarchy of stress reasons. In comparison, women consider that the reason of stressful situations is in the deficit of lunch breaks, while other causes have equal proportions. . 2. 3. Interpretation Through the analysis of the data above we can conclude that female part of our population love their Jobs more than male part. The reason lies in the fact that women are likely more conscious to the choice of a profession (according to results of the Figure 1. ). It means that women get more satisfaction from the work, which helps them better cope with stressful situations. Nevertheless, women are more successive to such physical and psychological phenomenon such as fatigue, headache rather than man. But we think that it is connected to the physiological Truckee of female organism, which affects all the sides of the life of women. Moreover, we found out that women are more interested and motivated at work than men, whose are reported lack of energy and motivation in their work.

All these aspects show the attitude of males and females to their work, and we can conclude that for women are interested in work and in results of their work rather than men. According to the results we have got the things that men and care of themselves differently greatly as well, but there are some similarities. Based on our data above can conclude that the most popular ways to manage stress at work among both omen and men are spending time with friends or family, exercising or walking and reading. Also we can see a tendency that men are more likely to cope with stress by bad habits like smoking or drinking.

Furthermore some men do nothing to manage stress at work. Unlike male respondents most female try to handle with stress by nap or massage. Summing up we see that women are more concerned about their health than men, and they do not tend to manage stress with help of bad habits. Also the results of our questionnaire represent that in general most respondents do not spend their time on work at home. However a little bit more than quota of women spend 4-6 hours on work at home, and some female respondents spend more than 6 hours. All this means that probability of stress caused by work for women is greater than for men.

Further our results shows that in general most of respondents find the atmosphere at their work as very friendly or friendly. The factor is very important because when the atmosphere at work is not tensed people feel themselves better and it decreases their stress at workplace. Probably the simplest way to reduce stress in the workplace is to make employees feel valued for more than Just the Job hey do. To sum up, emotional stress is characterized by a wide range of violations of various physiological functions, including sleep disorders.

But our questionnaire showed that most respondents do not suffer from insomnia. Well- planned strategies are essential to deep, restorative sleep you can count on, night after night. Some people appear to be resilient to difficult conditions, whereas others react adversely to such challenges, incurring a range of physical and mental disorders. Much research has shown that the way in which the brain and body adapt to stress is critical for physical and mental health. Further, according to the questionnaire majority of respondent thinks that stress can affect on health.

Especially women agree with this. And thus they try cope with stress rapidly than men to avoid problem with health. According to the survey results, men and women feel the same about the stress at work. The stress is considered to be as normal thing, because people experience it “sometimes”. This sounds good and makes pleasure for employers, who try to do the best for their workers to feel free and relaxed. In the next question percentage proportions were also the same. We should notice hat miss” was ticked twice more often than “No”-s.

It reflects that working population can take a responsibility in making decisions, especially in important ones. The research group found out main causes, which make stressful situations occur. Figures above show that they are “unreasonable demand from managers” for males and “lack of lunch time” for females. It can be easily interpreted as the mental perception of the environment. Men, as the strongest part of humanity, feel depressed when they are isolated forced to do something. That may cause stressful situations. Women, in their turn, have habit to chat and interchange some

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