Can Stress Be Beneficial?


It’s rare to hear people say that stress, or a stressful situation, feels great to them. Stress is an emotion we currently relate to a negative scenario: we want to find ways to alleviate it and feel better about ourselves. Stress is also typically related to many health issues and problems. However, sometimes, stress is good for us, and we typically benefit from the feelings of stress.

So what is the difference between the two types of stress? How can stress be helpful? And, how do we use it to motivate ourselves? This post will outline the ways in which stress can be beneficial for us, so long as we deal with it appropriately!

Good Stress versus Bad Stress

Psychologists have determined that there is a good type of stress. Eustress is a type of stress that is typically beneficial for us and our bodies. It’s the type of stress we feel when we are excited and exhilarated, like having a great day, receiving a promotion, riding a rollercoaster, or experiencing something exciting.

This is a good type of stress and one that helps us to ‘feel alive’. There are bad types of stress that we typically want to avoid or at least manage effectively. Acute stress is triggered by something external and is normally dealt with at the time.

Once it passes, and the stressor has been handled, our bodies stop reacting to the external stressor and return to their normal functioning. Chronic stress is long-lasting and typically is a serious type of stress. If left undealt with for too long, it can cause other health issues, like anxiety and depression, for example.

How Can Stress Be Helpful?

Stress can be helpful because it can motivate us. For example, we can choose activities or pick certain life goals that will help us feel the happiness that comes with completing a task. If you’re chasing an adrenaline high, try picking activities that will give you that euphoric feeling typically associated with eustress.

When Can Good Stress Become Bad?

People can be addicted to the highs of good stress! Adrenaline junkies are always chasing the next high for example. However, just as with bad stress, this stress does have an impact on the body, so it’s important to regulate it so that we maintain the correct internal routine.

When Can Bad Stress Become Good?

It’s unlikely that you’ve thought of bad stress becoming good. However, if we manage to maintain a positive perspective on our stressful situations, we can use these external factors to motivate us. Instead, try and look at a stressful trigger as a motivator or challenge instead.

This change in perspective will positively impact our responses to stress, and turn it from a negative effect, into a good one. There are certain ways to do this, like:

Stress is an emotion many of us feel at certain points in our lifetime. For some of us, it impacts us regularly, due to our living situations, work, or other external factors.

However, it’s important to recognize the good and the bad. While certain stressful situations do impact us negatively, other scenarios can fill us with stress. However, with both types of stress, it’s important to regulate and manage it effectively.

You can regulate your stress levels using the Reflect Orb and partnering App. It works by using biofeedback to measure your physiological signals and reflect them back to you, helping you learn how to control your daily stress. Then, simply use the data to understand your stress triggers and start your journey into a more relaxing way of life.

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Written by Noga Sapir - Reflect Author

Noga is the founder and CEO of Reflect Innovation. Noga’s work lies in the intersection of technology and design, and how tactility can create unique experiences in the mental health space.

Reflect Innovation was conceived in 2016 when, while completing her degree in Textile Design, Noga developed Reflect, looking to invent solutions for her own struggle with anxiety.

Noga holds a BSc. in Neuroscience from Tel Aviv University and BDes. in Textile Design from Shenkar College of engineering, design, and art.

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