To increase stress tolerance and increase the ability to be more relaxed, the Transcendental Meditation technique of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi seems to be a superior alternative according to scientific evidence. It develops increasing calmness and confidence and reduces anxiety considerably according to numerous studies -Ask your employer to pay the fee. More and more employers are paying part or all of the course fee for this technique. Research evidence indicates that practicing it decreases health problems considerably more than any other measure.
To reduce trait anxiety and improve the calmness, inner security (emotional thrust) and self confidence, an efficient and generally available and scientifically well documented technique is – Maharishi Mahesh Yogis Transcendental Meditation (which is different from other meditation techniques in important respects). I have not found scientific evidence of any other method – including psychotherapies of various kinds that have been reported to be as efficient. There are good evidence from brain research that TM develops the nervous system towards increased coherence and integration on a deep neuro physiological level. This might explain its remarkable and apparently unique efficiency. I cannot but recommend what I have found to be best, especially in the absence of any equals as far as I have been able to find out since 20 years of recommending it to my patients and following the research in the field of stress management and prevention for about as long time.
There are increasing evidence that stress and psychosocial factors may contribute importantly to the risk, as well as to the development of the disorder. – Even from a common sense viewpoint I think it seems reasonable that an anxious, tense and stress-prone person may have greater difficulties of recovering than a basically calm, relaxed and stress resistant person-. Actually, there are scientific observations.
Comment: I have studied TM, but briefly. I have spent longer on 2 other methods, one being autogenic training. They do not make quite the same claims as TM, however they share with it a non-mechanical approach of understanding what it is to be relaxed. (All this was quite some while before I got RSI; I have continued with the other methods through it, and became far more able to cope with stress during the couple of years immediately before I got it. It comes up frequently on the Sore hand List. I do not know whether in my case the stress of having to do far too much work, including far too much typing, was as important as the physical trauma. (“Having”: I am not a workaholic!) So do I, one point apart. I believe there are studies that anger – not self-directed — also helps. (I have a second point. Calm leads to fatalism. Or can. Fatalism will not change the working conditions that have brought about RSI.)