Curiosity: An Important Key to Stress Management

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By Daphne Michaels, Special for USADC


Do you know your tipping point — where positive stress; the kind that brings excitement, focus and a sense of the possible — turns into toxic stress?  When toxic stress hits, your good mood can tank without warning. Or, an adequate mood can break down into fear, overwhelm and dread. Unfortunately, toxic stress is on the rise;.  A recent American Psychological Association survey indicates that 75% of adults experienced moderate to high levels of stress in the past month and nearly half said it’s increased in the past year. Managing stress is more important than ever to maintaining not only physical health but career health. Let me explain:  We often think of stress in terms of what’s happening inside us, such as increased heart or feelings of dread. But stress is not a just a private experience — the way you handle stress is public. The way you behave while under stress is being watched and evaluated by everyone around you.

You’ve probably heard that “first impressions” take less than 10 seconds to form and are difficult to change. What I call “Stress Impressions”  may also take just 10 seconds to form and may be impossible to change. In that short time you will demonstrate the kind of professional you really are. To be seen as a top-notch professional you must know how to positively manage stress.

The key to positively managing stress is curiosity. The moment you adopt a sincere desire to learn you are redirecting stress into creative flow. And creativity of any kind has been shown to lower stress. No longer are you stuck with the fight or flight response. With curiosity, you have a 3rd choice … the mental state of flow. An effortless experience that brings about great results.

The next time you experience stress: Be curious. Listen carefully. And when you are most challenged by stress, reach out to a trusted advisor. Free yourself from stress through these guidelines:

Be curious.

Listen Carefully

Stay composed

Make your Stress Impression … Impressive!

For more information on this and more, visit my website at

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