What Is Stress?

First, and answer to the question, 'What is stress?' The term 'stress' refers to the response you have when facing circumstances that force you to act, change, or adjust in some way to maintain your footing, or to keep things balanced. (The circumstances themselves are known as 'stressors', but we'll have more on them later.)

This stress response, also known as the fight-or-flight response, triggers many involuntary changes in your body, which give you an extra burst of energy so that you can fight or run away from perceived threats. This was a helpful response for us in earlier times, when most of the stresses we faced were physical--this burst of physical energy was needed to keep us alive in many cases. Nowadays, though, more and more of our threats are psychological--job stress, interpersonal conflict, etc.--and this response to stress, which can actually make us think less clearly, isn't always necessary, or even helpful.

source : stress.about


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