Stress, friend or foe?

We live in times of continuous stress in our personal and professional lives, experience time conflicts, lack of balance between work and rest, business and quiet time, too much information available to us, often multi tasking and seeing ourselves less connected to others than ever before. Why is it that some people are more resistant to stress than others? How can we be resilient and meet our edges without falling apart? The key answer to those questions has to do with our attitude and perceptions as to whether we accept stress or suppress it, see it as a challenge versus a threat. Some amount of stress, in intervals, helps our body and mind. Blood vessels dilate and remain more relaxed, the heart pumps more blood which releases more oxygen to the brain for clarity and processing thoughts, emotions and feelings. Our cells stay active and young and the adrenals and cortisol levels go back to a normal baseline. However, prolonged stressful experiences are dangerous for health and homeostasis. The metaphor of a bow can be helpful to understand. If we pull the bow too taunt and overstrain it, resilience is lost and the bow breaks. So do our bodies and mind and we eventually experience dis-eases or illness. Another example, this time about frogs, is that when we put them in a pot of boiling water, they jump out. If we put them in a pot of water and heat it up slowly they don’t jump out and they will die. Minimal amounts or occasional stressors motivate us, stimulate growth and help us develop balance. Our attitude or relationship...