Stress as it turns out is a very useful scapegoat for all kinds of problems. If you ever feel low on energy, if you ever fail to get things done, if you ever get ill – just blame the stress! And while you’re at it, why not blame the busy lifestyle that lead to your being stressed in the first place?
That’s what a lot of us do, and it’s understandable that we don’t like stress seeing as it does take up so much of our thoughts – even making it difficult to concentrate at times. However, if this should lead you to try and avoid stress altogether then that could actually end up being counterintuitive…
Not all stress is bad for you you see… Allow me to introduce you to eustress.
What is Eustress?
Eustress is stress, but in a very different way to the negative ‘distress’ that we try so hard to avoid. You know that old saying ‘That Which Doesn’t Kill You Makes You Stronger’? Well essentially it’s talking about eustress – the right level of anxiety and pressure that leads you to do your very best.
Eustress for instance is the kind of physical stress you feel when you’re underneath a 100kg bar of weight at the gym, or when you feel like you can’t run any more during a marathon. It’s also the kind of stress you feel before you go on a first date that makes it all that much more exciting.
In other words, this is the kind of stress that motivates us and that gives us impetus to work harder. It is the kind of stress that makes things exciting, and it is the kind of stress that makes us stronger.
Benefits of Eustress
Really, the main benefit of Eustress is simple – it provides minor, but not excessive, stress which allows us to get used to dealing with pressure, time constraints and other difficulties. This then in turn means that when we face the more negative forms of distress, we are more ready to face them.
Eustress has also been shown in countless studies to be highly beneficial for motivation and performance. If you aren’t stressed at all before an exam, then statistically you’re actually less likely to perform well. How about that!
How to Create Eustress
So really there is something of a bell curve here. Too much stress will kill you in time and you’ll need wrinkles treatment before that, but the right amount will help to make you stronger. The key is to find that perfect balance and see what works for you specifically.
Then once you’ve found your ‘optimum level’ you need to identify the circumstances that created it, and more importantly – the thought processes that created it. In all likelihood you will have brought about the state of eustress. If you get really good at changing the way you think about stress and altering your thought patterns, you may find that you are actually able to transform your distress and turn it into Eustress. And then you will have the world in the palm of your hands…
Author Bio: Nancy Baker is a freelance blogger and an ace creative write with many years of experience writing for top blogs. Nancy has written on a myriad of topics and has written several posts for us.