Responding well to stress just as important as exercise and diet, claims study

Responding well to everyday irritations like traffic jams or conflicts at work is just as important to human health as maintaining a healthy diet and exercising regularly.

This is according to a new study, published in the Psychological Science journal, which found that minor annoyances such as waiting in a queue can lead to mental problems later in life.

According to, this is why being able to control emotions in the face of adversity is so essential to human wellbeing.

The study used data from two national surveys, both of which were conducted in America, finding that short yet sharp bouts of stress led to psychological issues such as anxiety and mood disorder ten years later.

One of the surveys used was the National Study of Daily Experiences, which shows that men and women aged between 25-74 are not only affected by major life events, but minor emotional experiences too.

Cited by, study author Professor Susan Charles claimed people were so focused on achieving their long-term goals that they fail to recognise the importance of controlling their emotions.

In words that may encourage people attend a psychotherapy course to stabilise their mood, Professor Charles said: "It is important not to let everyday problems ruin your moments. After all, moments add up to days and days add up to years."

However, according to Ms Charles, the main issue is that people often don't see mental health problems as such until they build up and eventually require treatment.