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Lessons from Stress

Would you rather we title this “good lessons from something bad?”

When I finally started real work and stress began to make meaning, I read up a little about stress. The most impressive lesson I learnt was that reaction called stress sets in the moment we think “I can’t cope!” Generally speaking, as long as we think we can handle it, it won’t stress us.

What lessons can we learn from stress?

  1. Stress is a reaction. And sometimes, you can choose your reaction!
  2. Like friction, stress is a normal part of life. Friction keeps us seated, standing, walking, driving, etc. Yet we design and lubricate to reduce friction. We can experience stress on the job and even on holidays!
  3. Stress can be a good indicator that it is time to change something. It could be a kind of alarm to tell us that there is trouble ahead if nothing changes.
  4. Stress reminds us that we do not have infinite capacities. On one hand, we cannot solve every problem, on the other hand, it is okay to ask for help!

There is short-term stress. We can ride the wave of short-term stress to get things done. That is why some friends revel in saying, “I work best under pressure.” Beware of long-term stress; it could be a precursor to irreversible and undesirable effects.


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