The Upside of Stress

Why Stress Is Good for You, and How to Get Good at It
by Kelly McGonigal | 279 pages

If you’ve ever had stress in your life (hah!) and wondered how to deal with it more optimally, I think you’ll love this. McGonigal tells us that how we THINK about stress plays a huge role in its affect on us and walks us thru the science behind it. Rather than try to get rid of stress (good luck with that!), we’re much better off shifting our mindsets to embrace and use the stress wisely!


“My curiosity about how your attitude toward stress influences its impact sent me on a search for more evidence. I wanted to know: Does how you think about stress really matter? And if believing that stress is bad for you, what’s the alternative? Is there anything good about stress that’s worth embracing? …

The latest science reveals that stress can make you smarter, stronger, and more successful. It helps you learn and grow. It can even inspire courage and compassion.

The new science also shows that changing your mind about stress can make you healthier and happier. How you think about stress affects everything from your cardiovascular health to your ability to find meaning in life. The best way to manage stress isn’t to reduce or avoid it, but rather to rethink and even embrace it.

So, my goal as a health psychologist has changed. I no longer want to help you get rid of your stress—I want to make you better at stress. That is the premise of the new science of stress, and the purpose of this book.”

~ Kelly McGonigal, Ph.D. from The Upside of Stress

The Upside of Stress.

This is one of my favorite books of 2015! I HIGHLY recommend it. Kelly McGonigal is a *fantastic* writer and the research she shares on the benefits of stress are truly astonishing.

If you’ve ever had stress in your life (hah!) and wondered how to deal with it more optimally, I think you’ll love the book. It’s based on Kelly’s uber-popular TED talk on stress you might have seen and it could quite literally change your (+ your family’s) life. (Get it here.)

As per the intro quote above, the essence of the book is the fact that how we THINK about stress plays a huge role in its affect on us. Rather than try to get rid of stress (good luck with that!), we’re much better off shifting our mindsets to embrace and use the stress wisely!

The book has two main sections: Part I = Why stress is good + Part 2 = How to get good at it. I’m excited to share some of my favorite Big Ideas so let’s jump straight in!

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About the author

Authors

Kelly McGonigal

Psychologist and author of The Willpower Instinct, now embracing stress