Stress means something different to every individual. However, managers need a working definition so the book defined stress as "an adaptive response, mediated by individual characteristics and/or psychological processes, that is a consequence of any external action, situation, or event that places special physical and/or psychological demands upon a person." This seems very complicated and confusing but it basically means the following: "environmental demands that that produce an adaptive response that is influenced by individual differences."
Recently, more people have become more stressed because of the recession. The father of the concept of stress, Hans Selye, stated that both positive and negative events can trigger an identical stress response that can be beneficial or harmful. He defined positive stress as eustress. He emphasizes that efforts need to be directed at managing stress, not at somehow escaping it altogether.
The article "Define Stress" re emphasizes this point of managing stress. It states that "Managing stress and symptoms of stress is important because stress and health are related to each other." That is why it is important to know what stress is and what your personal stressors are and how you can you manage them, which may be by seeking professional help.
"Define Stress." Manage Stress. 23 April 2010. http://www.aboutstressmanagement.com/stressrelief/stress-management/define-stress/define-stress.htm