When Stress is a Good Thing

Stress is actually good for you. Sounds crazy, right?

Well, that’s because there are two kinds of stress: good and bad. And you’ve only been getting half the story.

While bad stress causes disease, good stress is actually important to your overall health. Across the natural world, we see that stress is a driver for positive change and evolution. This holds true for all living beings, including plants, animals, and humans. The difference is how we are able to respond, grow and change from the stresses we experience.

When we are able to effectively incorporate stressful or negative experiences, derive meaning from them, and use them to grow, then we are experiencing “eustress.”

“Eustress” is the technical term for this kind of beneficial stress, or a stress that gives you a good feeling. When you think of EUstress, think “EUphoria”, or a positive state of mind.

Eustress isn’t defined by the stressor type, but instead is defined by how you perceive the stressors in your life and how you respond to them.

Here are two different examples of ways to relate to stress:

  1. John has a long commute to his high intensity job downtown. He hates it. He’d rather be at home with his family, or away on a fishing trip. John’s negative relationship to his circumstances results in chronically elevated cortisol. This is called “cortisol poisoning” and it results in an incredibly long list of physical ailments ranging from nagging to overwhelming anxiety, weight gain, high blood pressure and irritable bowel syndrome.
  1. Angela, on the other hand, has the same commute as John and has a job with the same level of intensity, but she derives meaning from what she does and feels like she serves a larger purpose than herself. She uses the car ride to listen to podcasts, and she loves working as a team with her colleagues to achieve goals under tight timelines. Angela also experiences stress, but she thrives on it. To her, going to work every day is like an extreme sport. It gives her energy and she connects the intensity to a sense of meaning, purpose, camaraderie, and challenge. Angela has a positive relationship to his stress. She is healthy, with low inflammation, a strong immune system, and recovers more easily from illness.

So what’s the difference?

It’s in the mental and emotional responses that these two men have to their life conditions.

For instance, you don’t go to the gym and get upset that the weights are heavier than you’re used to lifting. You purposefully chose those weights to challenge you. The heavy weight is exactly what you’re there for. To stretch your abilities. To increase your capacity.

Why should life be any different?  

Cultivating a healthy attitude and approach to your life is crucial to both your mental and emotional health. You can change distress into eustress, all by changing yourself at the level of your mind and your emotions.

You cannot depend on the world being an easier to place to be. But you can absolutely heal old wounds and develop new ways of relating to the challenges in your life.

 Clearing out old thoughts, feelings and beliefs, and then reframing life’s circumstances, you begin to respond to your life in new ways. Reframing allows you to change the perception of stress from being a cause of disease and disintegration, into being a driver of change and evolution.

In the right frame of mind, stress builds a better person.

In the right frame of mind stress builds a better person. We call this frame of mind the Resource State.

Resource Method teaches you how to completely rewire your relationship to stress. We teach you how to access your place of power. And to transform distress into eustress.

What if you were able to enjoy and benefit from stress? Would you be somebody who seeks new experiences that are challenging, expanding, and growth-inducing?

Experiences that might seem intimidating to the average person become easily manageable to Resource Method practitioners.

Comments are closed.