My Book (Stress)

Typical. You wait ages for your book to come out and then a few weeks beforehand someone in the same country brings out a seemingly identical book with a similar title. So my bedtime reading is now Future Perfect: What Next? And other impossible questions by Robyn Williams. I’ll let you all know how I get on with it.

Meanwhile…some more of my book!!!

In the UK there were 6.5 million workdays lost to stress back in 1995. By 2001 that figure had jumped to 13.4 million and there is no reason to suppose that this trend won’t accelerate into the future. However, taking a very long term view average hours worked have actually been declining for a century. So again, what’s causing the stress? One possible explanation is the increased pace of modern life caused by technology but this doesn’t really stack up either. In the 1870s the term ‘neurasthesia’ was created to describe the nerve-racking effects of modern inventions like the railway and the telegraph. What has changed though is the willingness of people to say that they are suffering from stress — a badge of honour in many work environments. There is also the argument that as societies become richer there is more time for introspection and people begin to feel a sense of entitlement, which fuels anxiety when expectations are not met. Whatever the reason the problem is going to get worse in the future. In the US 40% of workers say they have experienced verbal abuse at work and murder recently emerged as one of the most common causes of death at work.

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