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I don't remember hearing anyone use an equivalent of "stress" or "stressed" in a conversation, what I usually here is something like 压力很大 which in English would translate roughly to "I have a lot of pressure (on me) at the moment".

Maybe 压力很大 is the only option, or maybe even the right option, when looking to express stress in Chinese. However, I'm wondering if others here think there is a better option or maybe there isn't options because the concept of being 'stressed out' is a somewhat recent mainstream concept in the West and maybe being stressed doesn't quite fit well with Chinese culture.

So my questions are:

  • What do you think about my suggestion of stress being somewhat new in the West so there isn't an immediate equivalent in Chinese?
  • How would you translate something like "I'm feeling very stressed" or "I'm stressed out right now".

I can't see how I can translate the full concept of these sentences just using 压力 because it's not just about feeling pressure, but there are a range of emotions involved.

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How is feeling stressed different from feeling pressured? –  Question Overflow Oct 2 '13 at 2:58
    
压力 is pressure literally, and 压力很大 can mean "stressed out" figuratively. –  congliu Oct 2 '13 at 3:38
    
Please see 烦躁 and 崩溃 and 紧张。The closest eqivalant word could be 紧张 –  shuangwhywhy Oct 9 '13 at 1:53
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3 Answers 3

First, stress is not new in Chinese. Comparing with "压力很大", it is more like "烦燥".

Second, you can translate "I'm feeling very stressed" to "我觉得很烦燥", and "I'm stressed out right now" to "我现在快烦死了".

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烦 is one possible result of "stress", but not stress itself. –  Stan Oct 2 '13 at 3:18
    
Mercy. Sometimes it can mean that given a context. –  congliu Oct 2 '13 at 3:47
    
烦燥 is closer to meaning of irritated, 压力很大 is commonly used to express being stressed out. –  grayQuant Oct 3 '13 at 3:37
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As a Chinese I must say that everyday we are faced with a variety of troubles too. So stress is not new in Chinese to express stress we have many options for a example “鸭梨山大”or“压力海大了” is a Optimism express when people facing stress.

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I guess there is not a single Chinese word which can mean "stress/stressed/stressful" in all cases.

I would like to suggest the following translations.

I'm feeling very stressed. 我感到很大的压力。

A lot jobs are stressful. 很多工作都有压力。

She finds her new teaching job very stressful. 她觉得新的教学工作非常紧张。

Moving to a new house is a very stressful experience. 搬家是一件很令人焦虑的事情。

After a long hard day at work, she is stressed out. 在单位劳累了一整天后, 她已是筋疲力尽了。

How often do we arrive at work or school stressed out, tired and angry? 有多少次我们极度焦虑、疲惫、恼怒地来到单位或学校?

under the stress of poverty 为贫穷所迫

in times of stress 在困难时期

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+1 for multiple alternatives, w/real examples of appropriate use –  Stumpy Joe Pete Oct 9 '13 at 2:50
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