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The life of every person is full of misunderstandings and stressful situations. Stress is a condition that is characterized with the help of vast range of symptoms: insomnia, nightmares, reduced work efficiency, fatigue, and loss of control. Stress is an everyday problem that negatively influences the emotional and physical state of people. That is why all stressful situations should have a quick and efficient solution. Even nowadays, the issue of coping strategies requires further investigation and research.
In order to describe the most efficient coping strategies, it is necessary to provide a definition for the notion of coping. Coping can be characterized as a continuous process that is aimed to reduce, to weaken, and to minimize stress in order to avoid negative consequences. The following types of coping are the most effective: positive appraisal, problem-focused coping, meaning-focused coping, and emotion-focused coping. Coping strategies are considered to be individual issues, which are effective in different situations connected with stress. Despite this fact, problem-focused and emotion-focused copings are the most widespread and active (Lambert, 2000).
The strategy of problem-focused coping is based on responsibility and self-control. It is beneficial for every individual to fight back the “root” of stress as soon as possible. According to this strategy, a person has to analyze a prticular stressful situation from various points of view. That means to pay attention to advantages and disadvantages of the situation. Problem-focused coping makes an attempt to change or modify the stressful situation. Furthermore, this type of coping is connected with better mental health of individuals. This strategy turns to be extremely effective in situations that deal with serious incurable illnesses. With help of this type of coping it is easier for individuals to avoid negative emotions and stressors that can lead mental health even to worse condition (Lambert, 2000).
Emotion-based coping is used in situations when nothing can be done in order to change harmful and menacing environment-person transactions. The primary purpose of this strategy is to reduce emotional disorder with the help of negligence, ignorance, and avoidance. According to this strategy, a person should find something valuable in every negative situation. Emotion-based coping is sometimes characterized as interpretation strategy. The reason for such nomination is that an individual has to alter his views towards this or that situation. Changes in perception of the problem will provide a solution for a complicated challenge. This strategy is generally based on the slogan “keep feelings for yourself”. There are many occasions when emotion-based coping turns to be vain and useless as it does not help to reduce or overcome stress. Emotion-focused coping does not minimize the “roott” of the stress directly, but forces an individual to alter the evaluation of stress. Experts in the sphere of philosophy emphasize that emotion-based coping is usually used in occasion, in which the stressor is not subjected to control (Lambert, 2000).
In my opinion, both strategies are worth to be used in different stress-related situations. I suppose that problem-based coping is more helpful and advantageous as it is directed towards the problem itself. Moreover, it gives a unique opportunity to analyze the pros and cons of every situation. One of the main reasons why I prefer this strategy is that is applies such features as responsibility and self-control. Consequently, if the person pulls oneself together, he or she will have the strength to surmount all the obstacles and hardships. Furthermore, problem-based coping has direct associations with good mental health. I assume that in some occasions mental health is even more important than physical heath.
Having analyzed two basic types of coping with stress, we can make a conclusion that both of them are efficient and directed towards problem-solving. The primary difference is based on the methods and means of every strategy. In general, problem-based coping is applied when a person has a chance to change the stressor or attitude towards the problem area. On the contrary, emotion-focused coping is preferable in order to govern the feelings and emotions of an individual.
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