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Describe your experience of a stressful event

IELTS Cue Card/ Candidate Task Card 361 with Model Answer:

Describe your experience of a stressful event.

You should say:
  • what the situation was
  • what you did
  • how other people might have behaved in this situation
and explain how you felt about it later.

[You will have to talk about the topic for one to two minutes. You have one minute to think about what you are going to say. You can make some notes to help you if you wish.]



Model Answer 1:
I think we would hardly find a person who hasn’t gone through some stressful situations at some point in his or her life. I am no exception either, as I have also experienced a number of stressful events in life, and I am about to talk about one of them here today.

It was on a fine August morning about 5 years ago, when I was about to go to my job, which I had just started a couple of months earlier. As it was my new job, I made it my habit to arrive at my office well ahead of the schedule. However, on that fine morning, I wanted to arrive my office even earlier because my company “Chairman” was visiting to meet us, especially the new company recruits like us, from the corporate headquarter, and I just didn’t want to be late on my first meeting with him.

So, as usual, I took a direct bus to my office that morning also. Everything was going well until I suddenly noticed that all the traffics were being rerouted to another road because of some kind of emergency road construction service works. Initially, I thought that it was not such a big deal, but as I was falling behind my schedule to arrive my office on time, because of huge traffic ahead of me, I started to take stress on me. I even tried to call my office to inform them about the possible delay with my arrival, but my supervisor wasn’t very pleased with the news, no matter how hard I tried to convince him, by getting very frustrated at one point, that it was not my fault.

Well, I have a feeling that other people might have behaved the same in such a situation.

Anyway, later on, I felt that I shouldn’t have got so much frustrated with my supervisor as he was also trying to do his job. I also realized that my supervisor was only wishing well for me because he also didn’t want me to be late on my first meeting with our company chairman.


Sample Answer 2:
Getting involved in a quarrel with my husband was really a stressful event for me last week. I failed to control my temper. In fact, it was his fault and he tried to trap me as guilty. So, I protested against the unjust attitude and the situations turned worst. It was the perfect example of a stressful situation in my family of two. Finally, he admitted the guilt and then everything went back to normalcy. Both of us went angry on the matter that it created a mess around the home.

When I was blamed, I tried to control my temper. Actually, I am a short-tempered woman and become angry at things when they are not done accordingly. It was the event of our second marriage anniversary and I asked Marcos to bring a cake. He forgot. Then after returning home, he shouted at me that I did not tell him about the cake. And there were guests around. So, the situation took an untoward turn.

Well, the situation might be controlled in some other ways. If there were a more patient woman instead of me, she might have handled it cautiously as there were guests at home. She might have sent the husband to bring the cake silently. Though I did the same, there were some arguments between us while one of the senior guests tried to resolve the issue. But the scenario could have been worst too if there an even angrier woman than me.

Later, I felt that it was a mistake. He might have forgotten for his work pressure at the office and I also forgot to remind him again before he left office in the evening. However, it was a special learning for me to deal with a stressful situation. Thank God that everything went well finally.

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