Stress is an alert or excited state of mind in a person that has repercussions throughout the body. Your body produces what is called the stress response as a reaction to negative as well as positive events. In most cases though, stress has to do with the “fight or flight” mode in which our bodies goes after perceiving danger. Not to say that stress is all bad, just that most people these days suffer from more of it rather than too little of it.
The stress response works like a switch which shifts the body’s mode of operation. Adrenaline rushes, senses become sharp and alert, mind works faster and its efficiency improves, and heart starts to beat faster. These are the same responses that help when you are in an emergency situation and struggling to save your life from an impending possibly fatal situation. Other than such circumstances, you should not have too much stress but just enough to see you through.
The problem of having too little stress generally does not get so much notice as too much of stress. This is because most people suffer from too much of stress in life. When our body goes for too long without the sharp response and the resultant stimulation, the body loses its ability to handle stressful situations altogether. Short-term stress helps us perform at a higher level as our memory and immune system are activated. Even the brain cells are activated with a little bit of stress.
The ability to handle stress varies from person to person and one cannot measure up and allow only so much of stress while avoiding the more intense one. That is not in your hands. However, it is in your hands to train yourself for handling stress better. This would make all the difference. For example if you find that you are responding excessively stressfully to mundane matters and not proving to be effective, it is possible to adjust the way you respond.
Your stress response is based on the way you perceive situations and if a cancelled flight or traffic jam is your idea of a complete breakdown, the stress response would be the same. You should train your mind to see these situations as mere inconveniences that need not be bothered much about, as they are not in your hand. Just draw a line between what is in your control and what is not, and positive stress would be the one which helps you act and make the situation favourable for yourself.
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