A few years ago, Stanford lecturer Kelly McGonigal gave a TED Talk about stress. It wasn’t the first, and it surely hasn’t been the last, but her message stood out. In her talk, McGonigal cited research that proposed that stress might actually be good for you. In a nutshell, the research showed that the degenerative effects of stress on the body might be more about the idea we have that the stress we are experiencing is bad for us than the actual impact of the stress itself. So essentially, you’re making yourself a little internal layer cake of stress, and the icing might actually be the heaviest part. Lots of people saw or heard about this talk, distilled it down to an over-simplified point and thought “Whew, so I’m actually a rockstar for being stressed. That’s what I thought! Good talk, McGonigal, thanks.” But what McGonigal was really pointing out is that how we allow or train ourselves to think about difficult or challenging situations completely changes our body’s response to them. Sound familiar? Mmm hmm, thought so….
We have such a love-hate relationship with stress. Read More