Stress is a reaction caused by an imbalance between different demands of an individual and the resources available to cope with the demands. Rachel Sexton appears in the novel Deception Point by Dan Brown as a data analyst of the National Research Organization (NRO), which is a branch of the National Security Agency (NSA). She is the daughter of Senator Sedgwick Sexton, who is running for presidency against the current president. Rachel works for her father’s opponent, the current president.
Description of the Character and Nature of Her Stress and its Effects
Rachel provides first-hand information involving analysis of security details and other information concerning national security to the White House. Rachel Sexton experiences stress, when she is sent on a classified project by the president to validate claims by NASA that there is evidence of biological life in a meteor. This happens because she sees that the whole project is a result of deception of the highest level, and she is faced with a dilemma whether to expose it or not.
This stress affects her greatly, such that she is confused of whom to believe or trust. Her psychological well-being is affected greatly. This is evident as she hallucinates when it is dark. She sees her deceased mother’s ghost, which urges her to free herself of the bondage she is in. She stays in solitude and alienates herself from other people. She also experiences paranoia. Her physiological processes are also affected by the stress. This is seen from the facts that she loses appetite, and experiences severe headaches as she tries to think of ways to free herself (Bickerstaff, 2007).
Psychological Causes of Her Stress and Possible Management Solutions
Rachel is torn between obeying her father or the president. She cannot go against the president orders, which exhibit deception. She also wants to expose the deception to her father, which is also a disadvantage. Her father wants to privatize NASA, which is dangerous for the national security. This is the main cause of her stress. She can manage this by avoiding this conflict, by staying away from the two parties. She rarely finds time to sleep after the assignment by the president. This is also the cause of stress, which she can manage by ample sleeping time. She can also consult a doctor (Brown 2003).
Resolving issues that can cause stress is in most cases impossible. The best way to manage stress is changing the perceptions of the problems, and to live a balanced life.