A new study has revealed that most British adults (79%) feel stressed at least once a month, with the average being eight days a month.
Taken over the course of a year, that’s 96 days (around three months) spent struggling with stress.
Expand that over the course of an average lifetime, and stress could be affecting people's physical and emotional wellbeing for around 16.5 years.
The research, commissioned by HR software provider CIPHR, shows that while one in five (21%) of the 2,000 UK adults surveyed describe themselves as stress-free, for many people stress has a more constant, and potentially debilitating, role in their lives.
Nearly half (49%) report being affected by stress for five days or more a month, and nearly a third (30%) say it’s ten days or more.
More than one in ten (11%) of 45 to 54-year-olds admit to feeling stressed out every single day.
According to the research, the main causes of stress are not getting enough sleep and financial anxieties (39% each), followed by health (35%), family (31%), and weight worries (28%).
The next common stressors are the news (24%), work in general (23%), workload (18%), cleaning (16%), social media and working hours (both 14%).
More than eight in 10 (84%) of survey respondents named one or more work-related reason for feeling stressed.
Around a quarter (23%) of people blame work in general for being stressful.
One in five (18%) say it’s their workload that gets them down, one in seven (14%) say it’s long working hours, and one in ten people struggle with their colleagues (11%) or bosses (10%).
Claire Williams, director of people and services at CIPHR, says: “There has been a lot of focus in recent years on workplace stress and what employers can do to safeguard their employees’ mental health.
"Then came the pandemic, and 18 months on it’s very likely that people are feeling much more stressed than they’ve ever been
“These are incredibly challenging times and it’s really important that employers look out for the warning signs that individuals are struggling and actively talk to staff about ways to mitigate some of the impact that these work stressors and home stressors may have."