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The End of Stress
Four Steps to Rewire your Brain
- Read in 16 minutes
- Audio & text available
- Contains 10 key ideas
The End of Stress (2014) offers a unique look into the severe damage caused by stress on both your health and happiness, and offers simple tips and tricks that you can start using today to undo the damage. Ultimately, it reveals how adopting a peaceful mindset will set you on the path to increased productivity, creativity and intelligence.
Key idea 1 of 10
Stress can be life-threatening.
Ask yourself, am I among the three out of four workers who is stressed out by something each workweek?
Indeed, stress is everywhere. It’s become so ubiquitous that most of us consider it to be both normal and harmless. In reality, stress is serious, so serious that it has major health consequences.
When we’re stressed, our brain releases toxic hormones that damage our higher brain functions and consequently hamper our mental performance.
Our higher brain, or the prefrontal cortex, is where we derive our human intelligence. Think of it as the executive office of the brain, where the big decisions are made.
It’s responsible for the invention of airplanes and the Mona Lisa. It’s also where the plans are drawn for achieving our goals.
Furthermore, the prefrontal cortex enables social intelligence, helping you to discern other people’s emotions and evoking compassion.
Your stress hormones, however, disable these high-order functions. As a consequence, your brain functionality is dumbed down, thus making you predisposed to making poor decisions or mental missteps.
Furthermore, stress hormones sever the connections between your brain cells and shrink your brain’s neural networks. As a consequence, stress prevents your brain from making the new connections that are necessary for learning and creativity.
But stress doesn’t just harm your mental performance; it also harms your physical health. In fact, research shows that stress hormones weaken your immune system as well as damage your heart and even the chromosomes within your cells’ nuclei!
Consequently, we find that a myriad of illnesses are directly related to stress, such as heart diseases, strokes, cancer and diabetes, to name only a few of the thousands that exist. In fact, once you tally up all the stress-related diseases, you could consider stress to be the number one cause of death in the United States!
It’s clear that stress is severely damaging for both your body and mind. Luckily, as you’ll find out in our following blinks, reducing stress is as simple as tweaking your attitude.