Chapter Four Optimize Your Health: A Practical Action Plan

Dr. Hans Selye, the physician who conducted the pioneering research about “biological stress,” apologized after he retired for making a serious mistake. In his autobiography, he confessed that “stress” was the wrong term. He said he should have called his research findings the “strain syndrome.”1

The widespread belief about jobs having harmful stress is an artificial “consensus reality.” Articles, books, and workshops about stress, while well-intentioned, sustain an illusion that something called “stress” is constantly assaulting and harming us.2

The difference in meaning between stress and strain is an example of how our minds can put up barriers or build bridges to resiliency. What ...

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