Kelly McGonigal: How to make stress your friend
Aaron Wroblewski stashed this in How To Ace A Job Interview
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stress can actually make you stronger and more connected. how you view stress is more important than the stress itself. once you believe your stress is your body's way of preparing you for the moment, you can actually open blood flow, release oxytocin, and create the biological concoction that is courage.
taking care of others in high-stress times is healing. giving care counteracts negative effects of stress.
make decisions based on what will bring you meaning, and then trust yourself to handle the stress that follows.
Knowing what will bring us meaning is often not straightforward.
Therefore we need to give ourselves the space to fail and learn.
true. and we need to listen to our hearts and guts.
And our brains! [Wizard of Oz framework!]
Yes and that framework still is useful!
Finally, McGonigal referenced a third study from the University of Buffalo that found that every major stressful life experience increased an adult's risk of death by 30% — unless they also spent a significant amount of time helping loved ones and neighbors. Then, there was a 0% increase in risk of death. "When you choose to connect with others under stress, you can create resilience," McGonigal said.
Aha, so it's not stress itself that's good or bad. It's how you RESPOND to stress that determines the outcome (good or bad). This goes along with the (little known) fact that there are 2 kinds of stress - distress and eustress. I suppose then that a specific stressful event can go into either category depending on how we respond and how it ultimately affects us.
Yes, it's just like life: it's 20 percent what happens to you and 80 percent how you react.
I didn't realize there's distress and eustress -- that's fascinating!
i'd never heard of eustress before, rich, but what a great word! thank you!
i particularly like that it "is perceived as within our coping abilities." that is exactly the point!
Eustress, or positive stress, has the following characteristics:
- Motivates, focuses energy
- Is short-term
- Is perceived as within our coping abilities
- Feels exciting
- Improves performance