Topic: Stress



In this lesson, your tutor will help you go over this topic: Stress. First, go over the following vocabulary and expressions with your tutor. Read the word/expression and definition out loud, and your tutor will go over anything you do not understand. Practice creating a sentence or two to make sure you know how to use the word/expression properly.

Vocabulary/ Expressions

Nervous breakdown a period of mental illness resulting from severe depression, stress, or anxiety.
e.g. The student had a nervous breakdown during her big exam.
Panic attack a sudden feeling of acute and disabling anxiety.
Stress management Stress management refers to the wide spectrum of techniques and psychotherapies aimed at controlling a person’s levels of stress, especially chronic stress, usually for the purpose of improving everyday functioning.
Cope with~ to struggle or deal, especially on fairly even terms or with some degree of success (usually followed by with):
e.g. I will try to cope with his rudeness.
Wound up stressed out; tense
e.g. The actress is so wound up, and she is not giving her 100%.
Under a lot of pressure/Under the gun facing or enduring something such as pressure or a deadline.
e.g. I am under a lot of pressure lately. The management is under the gun for the mistakes made last year.
De-stress/wind down to release bodily or mental tension
e.g. You need to take some time off to de-stress/wind down.
Drown in paperwork have so much work to do; imagine your boss asked you to review boxes of reports and write a brief summary for each by tomorrow morning. That’s drowning in paperwork.
got too much on my plate to be too busy
e.g. I’m sorry, I just have too much on my plate right now. / If you have too much on your plate, can I help?
Blow off steam (of a person) get rid of stress or from being really angry
e.g. I need to go for a quick walk to blow off some steam.


Use the following questions as a guideline to form an interesting conversation with your tutor. Feel free to diverge from these suggestions if anything interesting comes up.

  1. Do you get stressed out easily?
  2. What do you do when you feel stressed out?
  3. What stressed you out the most?
  4. What are some physical effects that stress has caused you in the past?
  5. Is speaking in English stressful?
  6. Is it normal for people to feel stressed at work?
  7. Is it stressful talking to someone you find attractive?
  8. Do you think life is stressful?
  9. Is stress always bad?
  10. Andrew Bernstein said, “Remember that stress doesn’t come from what’s going on in your life. It comes from your thoughts about what’s going on in your life.”  Do you agree? Share your thoughts with your Cambly tutor!


Go over any new expressions or vocabulary that you learned today.


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