This week I took three “personality” tests to learn more about myself and the stress in my life. The first test I took was the Life Stress Inventory. My score was 189 which isn’t low, but could definitely be higher. My score outcome said I have a 50% chance of a health breakdown in the next 2 years. This was alarming to read. Some of the biggest contributing factors to this score included, “new responsibilities at work,” “troubles with boss,” and “major holidays.” I felt as though this test was very narrow in scope and put too much emphasis on some types of measures, while it overlooked others.

The second test I took was the Coping and Stress Management Skills Test. For this one my score was a 62, categorized as “problem-focused coping.” Which was deemed useful when the problem is within my control, but not as useful when the problem is out of my control. I find this to be true. When the problem is something I cannot change I feel a lot of excess anxiety about the situation. At the same time, I tend to be ambitious about fixing large problems because to me this is better than not doing anything at all. Currently at work I have a supervisor that leaves a lot of gaps in his work and the HR team at my workplace is broken in many ways. Rather than sitting back and festering in the problem, I pick up the slack for my supervisor and I make constructive suggestions to HR and upper management about how to better support employees. While this requires more work and effort on my end, I find it more relieving than just watching the problem happen and be stressed out about it.

Lastly, I took the Type A Personality Test. My score for the impatience/irritability measure was a 39. This means that while I am generally tolerant and patient, I can snap from time to time when I am fed up. I notice this to be mostly true. While I do get fed up form time to time, I only express this to trusted and close individuals. I’m good about healthy venting so that things don’t bubble up too much.

In the context of the workplace, I think that for employees like me, I can be best supported by frequent check ins with supervisors. This is to ensure that nothing is excessively bothering me and give me an opportunity to speak up. Additionally, mental health days are always supportive for employees. This paired with a culture that promotes days off for employees is essential to fighting burnout. One thing that I appreciate about my workplace is a culture that fosters supportive employees. This may be because I work in mental health, but everyone is sympathetic and understanding of each other.

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