STRESS TO SUCCESS
Teenagers experience all kinds of stressors. When we think of stressful events we think of examples such as stress about school, exams, friends, classmates, family conflicts, personal identity, health problems, and the future. This is partly why we think of stress as entirely a bad thing. However in the right circumstances stress can be perceived as the ‘spice of life’ and can be what creates challenge, suspense and excitement.
There are two main types of stress: positive and negative, also known as distress and eustress. Most kids have experienced eustress. Maybe while riding a roller coaster, watching a scary movie, or going on a first date. That feeling is good stress! Eustress can help boost motivation, focus, and energy; create a feeling of excitement; and improve performance and decision making.
By contrast, distress (commonly referred to as “stress”) can cause anxiety or concern, is often outside our coping capacities, can decrease performance and lead to mental and physical problems.
THE GOOD SIDE OF STRESS
- Stress Can Motivate You To Succeed
Good stress, also known as eustress, can help you enter a state of “flow”, a heightened sense of awareness and immersion into an activity. When we are faced with the stress of a deadline, eustress can help us manage the situation effectively, rapidly, and more productively.
- Stress Can Improve You Physical Performance
Stress can increase your physical performance and endurance. This is because it causes the release of adrenaline which speeds up your heart rate and metabolism.
- Stress Can Sharpen Your Memory
Have you ever notice that sometimes when you are stressed, your memory seems to improve? Remember that big test you aced where the answers seemed to come out of nowhere? Incredible though it may sound, stress is actually a cognitive enhancer which can boost several aspects of our mental prowess and so help us in professional and academic capacities.
- Stress Can Help Boost Your Immune System
A quick surge of stress can stave off disease: Studies suggest that it strengthens the immune system, makes vaccinations more effective, and may even protect against certain types of cancer.
- Stress Can Make Your Life More Interesting
Challenges like asking someone out on a first date, facing a known fear, interacting with new people, even learning something new; may not immediately come to mind when you think of stressors, because of the positive outcome.
- Stress Can Boost Brainpower
In stress the body releases hormones such as adrenaline that can boost brain cells. Adrenaline increases alertness, awareness, memory and cognitive functioning.
- Stress Can Make You More Resilient
Learning to deal with stressful situations can make future ones easier to manage.
The key, of course, is balance. Too little stress and you’re bored and unmotivated; too much and you become not just cranky but sick. “It’s important to pay attention to your stress thermometer,” and to stay below the boiling point.
To know more about how to manage stress on a daily basis. http://teenmentalhealth.org/
Darshana Doshi, is a highly skilled Marriage and Family Therapist, who is also certified in Anger Management. She helps individuals, families, children, and adolescents manage their stress better, by providing support and perspective on life’s challenging situations. To learn more about how to cope with stress, please call 909-841-3838 today.
Darshana Doshi, M.A., LMFT, CAMS -II.