Well, in order to learn how to reduce stress and use it as an advantage, you must first know exactly what it is. Stress is how our body responds to pressure. When we are faced with danger or uncertainty, our body releases stress hormones in order to trigger a fight-or-flight response, which is a primal response to deal with dangerous situations. In 2018, a study conducted on participants by telling them they would be delivering a surprise speech in front of a panel of judges revealed that stressed out participants were more accurate at estimating the risk of dangerous events than those who weren’t stressed. This points to a logical solution, we simply have to reorient our thoughts back into positive information to reduce our stress levels and we can do this by shifting to a growth mindset.
Growth mindset is generally applied most in education and how it can bring significant positive outcomes in students such as improving grades and being more resilient, however, new research has indicated that having a Growth Mindset can help anyone reduce their stress levels. A recent study investigated the effects of a person’s mindset on their stress levels. The levels of cortisol of the participants were constantly measured. The investigation found out that people with a growth mindset generally had much lower cortisol levels. There was another research which also found a strong link between developing a growth mindset and reducing anxiety as well as depressive symptoms. This is because those people had more resilience and had the mindset to not be afraid of getting into problems, they were more focused on how to learn from mistakes and problems and solve it in the future. Having this mindset in every aspect of your life will make you a much more successful and most importantly a much more happy person in general.
There are many techniques to deal with stress such as exercise and meditation. They help reduce baseline anxiety and temporarily relieve you of stress, however, they do not address the cause of the stress within your brain. Growth mindset basically assumes that skills are like a well of possibility and are not fixed traits, anyone can gain new skills and abilities as well as strengthen their capabilities not just in professional settings but also in personal and social settings. It allows you to see the world through the lens of growth which will help steer you away from negativity and stress back to the positive side.
Having a growth mindset means that you should not focus on problems, you should instead shift your focus to wonder how to get through a crisis, and how to learn from giving you constructive feedback instead of negativity and stress. You should learn how to respond to stressful situations in a positive and constructive manner.
You should also understand that in order to achieve your goals with the help of a Growth mindset and reduce stress you have to view failure as part of learning, put in the time and effort to achieve those goals, embrace the challenge and also come up with new strategies and ways to overcome the challenge instead of just giving up and taking it as a failure, which will make you stressed reducing your quality of life. You should also first determine where you are now and where your goals are. If you do not know where you stand now then you cannot possibly know where you want to go.
In order to develop a Growth mindset it is also critical that you know and understand your own limitations and you recognize that some things are beyond what you can achieve such as being 155 cm tall and wanting to be an NBA player. You should also change your perspective on failure, start seeing failure as a part of a learning process instead of seeing it as a sign of your inability. Once you start thinking like this, you will go far and achieve your goals. Reflection is also important and you should reflect on what you have failed at everytime it happens and always learn from it.
Stress can be crushing, it is important that you deal with it from the source and shift to a Growth mindset. It not only reduces your stress but it will allow you to achieve all your goals whether it’s your career goals or relationship goals, having a growth mentality will help you in every aspect of your life. If you need professional help and someone you can talk to in order to help you change your mentality then do not hesitate to contact Dr. Narindr.