How to Deal With Stress: The Difference Between Eustress and Distress
Stress is such a big part of our lexicon today, how people talk about it, it’s a part of our fabric. There are some people that are even kind of proud about how stressed they are, and there are others that live in toxic stress and hate it.
This is one of the most important things I’m going to tell you: when you’re in a “programming” moment, in the mythical 10% of life (that place where we have stress, intensity, and crisis), we love that place because it’s also where we get growth. That’s the only way we get to our greatness, it’s where we have potentiality and where we’re expanding that as well. So, it’s very important that we stay focused in those moments of life.
And in a programming moment, not in the 90% of life when it’s calm and easy (when you’re just chitchatting over a cup of coffee, or talking by the water cooler, or when you’re having lunch, etc.), but in programming moments when you are very conscious about the reality that you are creating, this should be the very last time that you want to ever use the word “stress.”
It has no value to you, and for most people it’s “half empty” because they are busy focused on being “stressed out.” Most people don’t say, “Wooohoo! I’m in my potential!” or, “I’m stressed out and I’ve got a lot of growth! Yay me!”
You have to understand that stress always comes in two forms, eustress (and that’s the Greek “eu-“ for positive, it’s good stress) and distress. Which one are you in at work and you’re stressed out, or the project is pushing a deadline, are you stressed out? Are you in eustress or you in distress? We want all stress to turn into eustress.
When you think about it, because we are dealing with the power of the mind, and the mind is controlling reality, you can do great things!
Here’s a metaphor: eustress is when you’re in the gym and you’re on your final rep and your growing your bicep, but it’s really violent cellular death that is taking place in the middle of your bicep at the cellular level. On the last rep, that’s where you create your growth. Distress is when you’re on the tenth rep or maybe even the fourth rep and your form is poor, or you have bad nutrition, or you’re battling the flu. When you are in distress, you’re going to tear the muscle and now your injured. That’s not the kinder form of stress.
That’s the physical metaphor. When we look at the power of the mind to do anything that we want it to do, when you command from the mind to do things with your body, when you command from the mind the reality you want to create, when you command the mind and you’re doing well, it does anything for you!
In your programming moment, get very, very conscious. Don’t say “I’m stressed out.” Ask, think, reflect, be conscious. Is this eustress? Which is “Yay! I’m growing, I’m getting stronger and getting better!” Or, is this distress? Because if it’s distress we need to do something else.
Most people record stress, and it can be a very long run the kind of toxic stress because you might be at your job and it’s a long project, and your relationship has suffered a little bit, and you don’t have the finances coming in on top of it, etc. It will feel distressful, but it’s not. It’s these times for epic growth and greatness!