TED: Kelly McGonigal: How to make stress your friend

For years, doctors have told you that heavy stress is BAD for you – 43% higher chance of dying – BUT only for people who BELIEVED that STRESS IS BAD FOR YOU…  Those who learned how to transform stress into a positive element – did NOT die.  

Her study shows that if you love what you do and you are highly stressed – as long as you view it positively and manage it, it is BENEFICIAL!!!  Pounding heart – creates more oxygen…  This is MY BODY helping me to RISE TO THE CHALLENGE…  Go after that which creates MEANING and and trust yourself to manage it.

But if you believe it is BAD for you, it is incredibly HARMFUL!  

Additionally, stress makes you SOCIAL!  Stress causes your pituitary gland to create oxytocin – which MOTIVATES YOU to seek SUPPORT… Your body WANTS to support and care about your friends and family.  It is also a natural anti-inflammatory and it helps HEART CELLS to heal from stress damage.  So you RECOVER FASTER and stay RESILIENT.   People who spend time caring for others, and who maintain a social support network LIVE LONGER.

This is the difference between dying at 50 or living well into your 90’s…  Stress gives us access to our HEARTS! Both emotionally and physically!

TED:  Kelly McGonigal: How to make stress your friend

Stanford University psychologist Kelly McGonigal is a leader in the growing field of “science-help.” Through books, articles, courses and workshops, McGonigal works to help us understand and implement the latest scientific findings in psychology, neuroscience and medicine.

Straddling the worlds of research and practice, McGonigal holds positions in both the Stanford Graduate School of Business and the School of Medicine. Her most recent book, The Willpower Instinct, explores the latest research on motivation, temptation and procrastination, as well as what it takes to transform habits, persevere at challenges and make a successful change.

In her words: “The old understanding of stress as a unhelpful relic of our animal instincts is being replaced by the understanding that stress actually makes us socially smart — it’s what allows us to be fully human.”

Read more about Kelly McGonigal on the TED Blog »

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