The author of The Willpower Instinct delivers a controversial and groundbreaking new book that overturns long-held beliefs about stress.
More than forty-four percent of Americans admit to losing sleep over stress. And while most of us do everything we can to reduce it, Stanford psychologist and bestselling author Kelly McGonigal, Ph.D., delivers a startling message: Stress isn’t bad. In The Upside of Stress, McGonigal highlights new research indicating that stress can, in fact, make us stronger, smarter, and happier—if we learn how to embrace it.
The Upside of Stress is the first book to bring together cutting-edge discoveries on the correlation between resilience—the human capacity for stress-related growth—and mind-set, the power of beliefs to shape reality. As she did in The Willpower Instinct, McGonigal combines science, stories, and exercises into an engaging and practical book that is both entertaining and life-changing, showing you:
• how to cultivate a mind-set to embrace stress
• how stress can provide focus and energy
• how stress can help people connect and strengthen close relationships
• why your brain is built to learn from stress, and how to increase its ability to learn from challenging experiences
McGonigal’s TED talk on the subject has already received more than 7 million views. Her message resonates with people who know they can’t eliminate the stress in their lives and want to learn to take advantage of it. The Upside of Stress is not a guide to getting rid of stress, but a guide to getting better at stress, by understanding it, embracing it, and using it.
Most people experience stress, and many, if not most, regard it as a destructive, unhealthy force. Yet McGonigal (The Willpower Instinct) believes that this belief actually does more harm than good. In her thought-provoking and thoroughly researched self-help book, she proposes that thinking about stress positively has the potential to extend life and make it more enjoyable. She suggests that our approach to stress affects our actions, and that a healthy mindset, where one accepts stress and uses it to do better, makes for healthy behavior. The stress response triggers hormones that can help people to do better to function at peak performance, spark social interactions, and learn effectively in new situations. Stress might actually be viewed as necessary for creating a meaningful life. The plainspoken, sensible McGonigal addresses herself to skeptical readers, admitting freely that she was unconvinced when first presented with this view. By citing numerous scientific studies and offering plenty of thought-changing exercises, McGonigal persuasively demonstrates why people should start thinking differently about their stress.