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What is Stress?

These days you can’t turn on the television or the radio, or pick up a newspaper or a magazine without someone going on about Stress. And if they are not directly talking about Stress, maybe they are giving you some information that is likely to get you stressed – the failing global economy, wars and terrorism, climate challenges, murder, your sports team’s poor results..... We live in a stressful era, possibly the most stressful period humans have ever experienced.

Stress is your body's way of responding to any kind of demand. It can be caused by both good and bad experiences. When people feel stressed by something going on around them, their bodies react by releasing chemicals into the blood. These chemicals give people more energy and strength, which can be a good thing if their stress is caused by physical danger. But this can also be a bad thing, if their stress is in response to something emotional and there is no outlet for this extra energy and strength. This class will discuss different causes of stress, how stress affects you, the difference between 'good' or 'positive' stress and 'bad' or 'negative' stress, and some common facts about how stress affects people today.

Stress can affect both your body and your mind. People under large amounts of stress can become tired, sick, and unable to concentrate or think clearly. Sometimes, they even suffer mental breakdowns.


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