Stress is unavoidable. Currently, reported levels of stress are incredibly high, and with that, comes an immense strain on your physical and emotional wellbeing. The good news is that you can turn your unhealthy stress into positive stress for personal growth.

How Stress Impacts You

[:en]How positive stress can help us with personal growth[:]

When we experience prolonged, high levels of stress, our bodies and minds suffer. We experience difficulty thinking, concentrating, and performing at our best.

Physically, we experience difficulty sleeping, which impacts how well our body functions, as well as how well we take care of ourselves and notice what our bodies need—particularly if we are having difficulty thinking due to the stress.

You may be noticing, within this description of stress, that there seems to be a pattern that is almost circular in nature.

For example, a stimulus triggers our feelings of stress, which then impacts our emotional wellbeing, which then impacts our physical wellbeing—leading to poor management of our initial stress and usually creating more stressful stimuli.

As mentioned, since stress is undeniable and unavoidable, it is essential to figure out and explore ways to effectively manage and cope with the stress we experience within our lives.

Healthy stress differs from unhealthy stress in that it allows you to experience excitement and joy in anticipatory events.

This article will provide you with 3 specific ways that you can use to shift unhealthy stress to healthy stress.

These tools can be used to your advantage for personal growth as an individual.

3 Ways to Shift Unhealthy Stress to Healthy Stress for Personal Growth

[:en]Turn positive stress into personal growth[:]

1) Reframe your mindset

What is causing stress in your life?

What moment, activity, or event-triggered your stress response?

Understanding exactly the root of your stress can be difficult, but it is essential in establishing healthy ways to respond to stress.

Additionally, understanding where your stress comes from or what triggered it can encourage you to reframe your perception of the trigger and thereby encouraging you to better respond to the trigger.

[:en]reframe your mindset[:]

Reframing your mindset looks like this—say that you signed up for more tasks than you had initially planned. You may begin to notice feelings of stress arise within you and you may begin to worry about how you will complete all of the tasks you need to complete.

Notice how your mind will begin the cycle of stress and where it is experienced within your body.

Then, try to shift your mindset. Start to think about the tasks you need to complete first and rank each subsequent task with a level of importance.

Then, looking at the tasks you have labeled as most important, shift how you perceive these tasks.

Change your thinking from “I have to do this” to “I get to do this”.

For example, “I get to pick up my kids from school today… I have not been able to pick them up for a while and I am so excited to hear how their days went”.

This shift in perspective can immediately begin to shift how we are feeling and experiencing the task.

2) Understanding what a growth mindset looks like

In addition to reframing your mindset, it is important to understand how your brain deals with stress and how utilizing healthy stress can increase a growth mindset and personal growth.

Growth mindset is how people recognize that through persistence, resilience and perseverance, you can improve any ability that you would like to improve, just by believing in yourself and your capabilities.

Growth mindset is essential when thinking of ways to shift unhealthy stress to healthy stress.

When we feel stressed, we often feel like we are not capable of completing any task or doing anything that we need to do.

Therefore, it is important to understand how a growth mindset can increase a more positive outlook on stressful events—changing “I cannot do this” to “I can try to do this”.

3) Using eustress to mobilize

Now that we understand how to shift our mindset and incorporate a growth mindset into our daily experiences when combating stress, we can now begin to mobilize.

As mentioned previously, healthy stress is often called eustress—positive experiences with stress that can often result from unhealthy stress once you reframe your perspective.

It is important to understand that because stress can leave us feeling unable to move forward, we must shift our perspective and mindset to mobilize through eustress.

Begin to recognize ways that you can reframe your stressors to appear more positive in nature. Try incorporating the reframing messages as mentioned in tip #2.

[:en]reframe your stressors to appear more positive[:]

This ultimately leads to a sense of relief from the strong grip of unhealthy stress.

When you reframe your stress in a way that sounds more inviting, it makes you feel excited to achieve or complete your tasks at hand that once caused you unhealthy stress, thereby mobilizing you.

Main Takeaways

  • Understand ways in which you experience stress. Once you understand where the root of the stress comes from, you can better combat it.
  • Incorporate reframing methods when you are looking at your stressors—how can you reframe the task or experience to make you feel motivated to continue and overcome it?

Reframing your stressors is not an easy task and takes practice. That is why a growth mindset is so essential—you must begin to think that you can do anything you want to do, simply by believing in yourself.

An additional way to ensure you are incorporating reframing and establishing a growth mindset is through going to the Mindshine app (iOS or Android) or the Magazine.

Learn more about The Key for Happiness or How to Make Better Decisions.

Either way, keep moving forward and give yourself rewards and a pat on the back along the way. You got this!