I found this in an article on the PubMed web site: "In a study of the bodily, mental, and psychophysiological reactions of employees involved in the design of advanced telecommunications systems and of office employees using regular video display technology, several stress-related psychosomatic disorders have been identified." Those disorders include:
- Sleep disturbances
- Psychophysiological stress (I looked this up and got this definition — the branch of psychology that is concerned with the physiological bases of psychological processes. Now if I only knew what that means.)
- Somatic complaints (headaches, chest pains, nausea, lower back pain, etc.)
So, okay, the fact that IT design people are more prone to stress is not such a big surprise. The depressing part is that the same group performed a controlled experiment with 116 advanced telecommunication systems design employees to see how well stress reduction techniques worked on them. Their conclusion?
"The type of stress-reduction programs chosen and intensity of participation did not significantly impact results."
Wow. That's certainly an uplifting bit of data. I wonder how closely that mirrors the IT society as a whole?
Toni Bowers is the former Managing Editor of TechRepublic and is the award-winning blogger of the Career Management blog. She has edited newsletters, books, and web sites pertaining to software, IT career, and IT management issues.