Unstressable Book Summary - Unstressable Book explained in key points
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Unstressable summary

Mo Gawdat & Alice Law

A Practical Guide to Stress-Free Living

19 mins
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    Stress and the three L’s.

    You know the feeling: heart racing, palms sweating, mind spinning. Stress! Many of us feel this way much of the time. But it is possible to become "unstressable," able to face life's challenges with resilience, flexibility, and calm.

    The first step lies in understanding the biology of stress and how to work with it rather than against it. Stress is fundamentally a survival mechanism, designed to give us the boost we need to overcome threats. A jolt of cortisol from the adrenal glands fuels the brain with glucose and prompts the muscles to burn fat, providing us energy to fight or flee. This acute stress response is helpful in true emergencies.

    The problem arises when our stress becomes chronic – getting stuck in the "on" position, never returning to a calm baseline. The stressors of modern life are often psychological ones – thoughts and emotions that we perceive as threats, even when no immediate danger exists. Pondering an uncertain future or ruminating on the past can trigger the same physiological cascade as being chased by a predator. What's more, stress breeds stress, as the brain's attempts to cognitively "solve" the problem can actually reinforce and amplify the feeling of being under siege.

    Chronically high cortisol exacts a heavy toll. It breaks down muscle, promotes weight gain, suppresses immune function, and impairs memory, focus, and mood. Left unchecked, prolonged stress can lead to conditions like depression, anxiety, heart disease, and Alzheimer's. 

    Moments of stress may be inevitable, but getting stuck in cycles of worry, fear, and panic doesn't have to be. The authors recommend cultivating what they call The Three L’s.

    The first L stands for "limiting." Take an honest inventory of the stressors in your life, both big and small, internal and external. Then, start systematically reducing them. This might mean setting clearer boundaries at work, cutting back on commitments, or learning to say "no" to certain requests.

    The second L is for "learning." Approach each stressful episode as a chance to gain insights and skills. Get curious about what the experience can teach you. What coping strategies worked well? What didn't? By embracing a spirit of continuous improvement, you'll gradually build a toolkit of stress-busting techniques tailored to your unique needs and circumstances.

    The final L stands for "listening" – tuning into the quiet wisdom of your body and inner self. In the rush of daily life, it's all too easy to disconnect from our physical and emotional needs. Make a practice of checking in with yourself regularly. Notice when tension arises in your body. Pay attention to the subtle whispers of your intuition. Honor the full spectrum of your feelings, without judgment or suppression. The more you cultivate this kind of deep self-awareness, the easier it becomes to catch stress before it spirals out of control.

    The path to stress mastery is paved with many small choices. Becoming "unstressable" is about taking radical responsibility for one's inner state. Stress isn't what happens to us, but how we respond. 

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    What is Unstressable about?

    Unstressable (2023) applies an engineering mind and stress-management expertise to our epidemic of stress. It argues that chronic stress is avoidable, often as much due to negative thought patterns as external circumstances. It offers practical exercises to help build the skills to manage stress.

    Unstressable Review

    Unstressable (2022) explores practical strategies for managing stress and achieving inner peace in a hectic world. Here's why this book is worth your time:

    • It offers simple, effective techniques to reduce stress and anxiety, empowering readers to take control of their mental well-being.
    • With a focus on mindfulness and self-care practices, it guides readers towards a calmer, more balanced life.
    • The book presents insightful perspectives on stress management that are both enlightening and engaging, ensuring a captivating and beneficial read.

    Who should read Unstressable?

    • Those struggling with anxiety, burnout, or emotional upheaval
    • Chronic worriers seeking a new perspective on stress
    • Anyone ready to cultivate unshakable resilience and calm

    About the Author

    Mo Gawdat is an entrepreneur, the former chief business officer of Google [X], and author of bestsellers such as Solve for Happy, Scary Smart, and That Little Voice in Your Head. He has cofounded more than twenty businesses in various fields. Alice Law is a Stress Management Consultant, speaker, and host of the podcast Unstressable with Alice Law. She has worked internationally with private clients and large organizations to help them manage and prevent stress.

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    Unstressable FAQs 

    What is the main message of Unstressable?

    The main message of Unstressable is to find peace and calm in life through practical insights and strategies.

    How long does it take to read Unstressable?

    Reading Unstressable will take a few hours. With the Blinkist summary, you can grasp its key points in just 15 minutes.

    Is Unstressable a good book? Is it worth reading?

    Unstressable is a valuable book offering actionable ways to reduce stress and improve well-being. It's worth reading for practical guidance.

    Who is the author of Unstressable?

    The authors of Unstressable are Mo Gawdat & Alice Law.

    What to read after Unstressable?

    If you're wondering what to read next after Unstressable, here are some recommendations we suggest:
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    • Dialectic of Enlightenment by Max Horkheimer & Theodor W. Adorno
    • Briefly Perfectly Human by Alua Arthur
    • Optimal by Daniel Goleman & Cary Cherniss
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