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2 Different Kinds of Stress Which Make-or-Break a Person

2 Different Kinds of Stress Which Make-or-Break a Person
    Photo credit: itsaboyd (CC BY-NC 2.0)

    When we speak of stress, oftentimes, we only think of all negative implications it brings us. However, stress is not all bad.  In fact, stress can also be good. We just have to be mindful of what kind and level of stress we are in.

    By definition from Merriam-Webster dictionary:

    Stress is a force exerted when one body or body part presses on, pulls on, pushes, or tends to compress or twist another body or body part.  It’s a constraining force or influence.

    In simple terms, stress is a kind of pressure, force or influence that moves us to action, either physically, emotionally or mentally.

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    Stress is important because it brings meaning to our life. Life without any kind of stress will be lifeless and boring.  Stress can  make life worthwhile.

    One of the major causes of stress is work.  Imagine if we lived without working, with no challenge and pressure to attend to, or no project to accomplish. At first, we will like and enjoy it, but as days go by that we don’t do anything, eventually, we will feel like our life has no meaning and purpose.

    Our mind, body and life in general are designed to do some level of work or activity to give it meaning and purpose.

    The Two Different Kinds of Stress

    Generally, there are two kinds of stress:

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    1. Positive Stress
    2. Negative Stress

    Positive Stress

    Positive Stress, also referred to as Eustress, is often felt when we are confronted with demanding and challenging situation which we are capable of handling. Challenges and responsibility gives us a sense of thrill and excitement.

    An example of eustress is when we are working on new projects (like a promotion or business venture) or when we are entering a competition (like a sports tournament). It brings us a feeling of enthusiasm to win and succeed in the new challenge.

    Eustress is a healthy kind of stress because it motivates and inspires us in our daily life activity and work. As a result, it gives us positive feelings of fulfillment and enthusiasm.

    People who are experiencing positive stress contribute outstanding performance and output. They are the ones who enjoy what they do and they become successful in their endeavors.

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    Positive stress is a kind of stress that is essential in winning and succeeding in life. It’s a kind of stress that can make a person live a fulfilled and successful life.

    Negative Stress

    Negative stress is the “most popular” kind of stress. It’s a stress that causes negative implication such as anxiety, fatigue, depression, unhappiness and other illnesses.

    An example of physical negative stress is when we are working on many projects and responsibility beyond what we can do, or when we no longer have time to relax and even get enough sleep. On the other hand, a source of negative emotional stress is when we don’t have good relationships with the people around us.

    When we are met with negative stress, it often blocks our happiness and success and if it is prolonged, we can become emotionally, mentally and physically sick.

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    People who are experiencing negative stress are the one who always complain and feel miserable about life. They tend to become a victim instead of a victor. They have low self-esteem, are hard to relate and deal with, and have less accomplishments.  As such, they are often unfulfilled and unsuccessful.

    Negative stress is a kind of stress that can break a person’s potential success and fulfillment in life. It is one of the main killers of winning and success.

    Now that we know the two different kinds of stress, our responsibility is to be aware of the signs that shows which kind of stress dominates us and do something constructive to solve it.

    Adopting the right attitude can convert a negative stress into a positive one. ~ Hans Selye

    Remember to use positive stress as motivation to keep you moving and performing excellent work. At the same time, be mindful of the negative stress that may paralyze you. Know how to maintain an appropriate balance between the two.

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    Last Updated on December 2, 2018

    How to Flow Your Way to a More Productive Life

    How to Flow Your Way to a More Productive Life

    Ebb and flow. Contraction and expansion. Highs and lows. It’s all about the cycles of life.

    The entire course of our life follows this up and down pattern of more and then less. Our days flow this way, each following a pattern of more energy, then less energy, more creativity and periods of greater focus bookended by moments of low energy when we cringe at the thought of one more meeting, one more call, one more sentence.

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    The key is in understanding how to use the cycles of ebb and flow to our advantage. The ability to harness these fluctuations, understand how they affect our productivity and mood and then apply that knowledge as a tool to improve our lives is a valuable strategy that few individuals or corporations have mastered.

    Here are a few simple steps to start using this strategy today:

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    Review Your Past Flow

    Take just a few minutes to look back at how your days and weeks have been unfolding. What time of the day are you the most focused? Do you prefer to be more social at certain times of the day? Do you have difficulty concentrating after lunch or are you energized? Are there days when you can’t seem to sit still at your desk and others when you could work on the same project for hours?

    Do you see a pattern starting to emerge? Eventually you will discover a sort of map or schedule that charts your individual productivity levels during a given day or week.  That’s the first step. You’ll use this information to plan your days going forward.

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    Schedule According to Your Flow Pattern

    Look at the types of things you do each day…each week. What can you move around so that it’s a better fit for you? Can you suggest to your team that you schedule meetings for late morning if you can’t stand to be social first thing? Can you schedule detailed project work or highly creative tasks, like writing or designing when you are best able to focus? How about making sales calls or client meetings on days when you are the most social and leaving billing or reports until another time when you are able to close your door and do repetitive tasks.

    Keep in mind that everyone is different and some things are out of our control. Do what you can. You might be surprised at just how flexible clients and managers can be when they understand that improving your productivity will result in better outcomes for them.

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    Account for Big Picture Fluctuations

    Look at the bigger picture. Consider what happens during different months or times during the year. Think about what is going on in the other parts of your life. When is the best time for you to take on a new project, role or responsibility? Take into account other commitments that zap your energy. Do you have a sick parent, a spouse who travels all the time or young children who demand all of your available time and energy?

    We all know people who ignore all of this advice and yet seem to prosper and achieve wonderful success anyway, but they are usually the exception, not the rule. For most of us, this habitual tendency to force our bodies and our brains into patterns of working that undermine our productivity result in achieving less than desired results and adding more stress to our already overburdened lives.

    Why not follow the ebb and flow of your life instead of fighting against it?

      Featured photo credit: Nathan Dumlao via unsplash.com

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