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Stress: Enemy or secret friend?

You hear a lot of talk about stress: “I’m so stressed out” or “My job is so stressful,” but what exactly is stress? I’ve read a lot of definitions and most of them focus on the worry and anxiety that come with stress.

But what about stress as being healthy? Without some kind of stress, wouldn’t we all just lie around and eat Godiva chocolates all day, watching too much reality TV?

Stress is a fearful response to life’s changing circumstances. We know that life is going to always be throwing changes at us; there’s no way to avoid this. If we try to dig our heels in and fight every change that comes our way, we will lose and we will be exhausted.

Healthy stress: does that sound strange to you?

Some of us work better with deadlines than without them (I’d raise my hand here). Some of us like a hit of fear or excitement now and then. Some of us don’t mind getting a little nervous before we speak before a group, walk into a party or give a presentation at work. For some of us, this kind of stress is energizing. Shirley MacLaine once said that if she’s not nervous before a performance, she knows it won’t be a good one. She said that the nervousness gave her energy and motivation.

Read the full column HERE in Gay San Diego, a SDGLN media partner.