Zayne Malik Taking Break from One Direction to Deal with Stress from Infidelity Rumors

Being a driven person contributes to stress, and it also means you need to know when to step down and take some time for yourself if that stress becomes overwhelming. Zayn Malik of One Direction is a good example. He was busy with a grueling concert schedule when a photo of him with his arm around a woman with a bare-midriff raised speculation that he was cheating on fiance Perrie Edwards.

Malik denied the accusations on Twitter then said he was leaving his band mates on their Asian tour to return to the United Kingdom to recuperate from stress.

No One is Immune to Stress

You may not be in the public eye like Malik or be the subject of gossip column speculation, but that doesn't mean that you're immune from stress or its potentially disastrous consequences. Humans are equipped to deal with some stress since it's actually an old survival mechanism, but chronic stress impedes your functioning and puts you at risk for physical and mental problems, as this article explains.

Ongoing stress triggers the release of hormones that put your body in high alert and interfere with long- and short-term memory and concentration. Over time, your anxiety levels increase and you have trouble sleeping. Eventually the constant high alert interferes with your ability to enjoy life and experience pleasure. Physically, stress boosts your heart disease and stroke risk, It also impairs your immune system, leaving you more vulnerable to illness and infections, and may cause generalized pain, eating problems, and stomach and bowel disorders.

Stress Management Options

With all these potential negative effects, it's wise to take some time off as Malik did, or at least implement a stress management plan. Self-help measures include exercise, meditation, talking to other people, getting a pet, and making time for relaxing activities. If you need help, many counselors treat stress with cognitive/behavioral therapy that teaches you useful strategies. In extreme cases, your doctor or a psychiatrist may prescribe anti-anxiety medication.

Not sure if you've reached the danger zone? This stress test will help you determine just how well you cope with stress and suggest ways that you can improve your stress management skills. If you're like Malik and dealing with relationship issues, this relationship attachment style test will give you insight into how you best interact with the people around you.