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2) Daily hassles as a cause of stress

Daily hassles as the frustrating, irritation everyday experiences that cause us “hassle” and often lead to stress

Daily Uplifts are minor positive things in life that make us a feel a little better

Research into daily hassles as stressors

Bouteyre et al

AIM – To test a relationship between daily hassles and mental health

PROCEDURE – Students moving from school to university completed a hassles questionnaire and a “depression inventory”.

FINDINGS  – 40% of the students were found to suffer from depression symptoms  in this period

CONCLUSION – There is a correlation between daily hassles and the incidence of depressive symptoms.

Guilan et al found that participants who had a stressful day at work at higher levels of stress on the journey home. This shows the stress of daily hassles can accumulate throughout the day.

Why are Hassles so stressful?

The amplification effect – Chronic stress caused by negative life changes can “wear people out” making them more prone to stress from daily hassles.

The accumulation effect – There is an accumulation of minor daily stressors which creates persistent irritations, which leads to finding other hassles more stressful and so on.

Action Theory – Hassles are disruptive because they involve effort, preventing us from pursuing our goals. This means we are also fatigues because we have to work out how to overcome the problem caused, i.e. where to find the keys. This also means it makes us negative as we feel bad not being able to achieve our goals.


Memory problems – Most research on daily hassles are based around participants recall of events. So people may recall daily hassles and how much stress it caused them incorrectly, making the data invalid.

Correlation, not causation – The data shows a link between daily hassles and stress, but it doesn’t say for sure whether one is caused by the other.

Real world application – Some research does provide an insight into the real world, for example Gulian et al’s work gives us an understanding of road rage, however a lot of the time the data can’t be used very much in real life.


About Sam Cook

A blog set up to help A Level students revise Sociology


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