Good Stress vs Bad Stress

Did you know that stress can be good and is a fundamental part of our survival system?  Chronic or long term stress can weaken our immune system and become harmful if it is continuous.  However, short term stress, lasting minutes or a few hours, is actually beneficial and improves things such as our overall performance as athletes! What could possibly be a good example of that? Oh yea, our workouts at GPC! 
Eustress is the body’s natural physiological response to a stimulus and creates beneficial outcomes.   This is when you are pushed beyond your comfort zone to a place where you can learn, grow and get stronger.  Sound familiar? This is what happens in The Performance Zone!  Workouts place your body in a state where it can respond with eustress.  A natural response to exercise or a “stress” improves our mood, body function, immune system, digestion, performance, and the list goes on! 
Let’s look at a quick list of what could be Good vs Bad Stress:
Good (eustress) :  

  • Short term, lasting a few minutes or hours 
  • Creates positive experiences
  • Inspires you to take action
  • Leaves you feeling better than you were before
  • Helps you create a positive outcome

Bad (distress) :

  • Chronic, lasts days, months or even years 
  • Presents negative response or emotions 
  • De-motivates you and leaves you feeling worse than when you beagan 

What could help create a reaction to cause us to be in a state of eustress? Workouts; yes! How about the beautiful game of golf? Sure it’s frustrating and you might think “no it causes me distress not eustress”.  Then why continue to keep playing? Because although the game removes you from your comfort zone and tests your limits, it creates positive experiences, inspires you to take action and improves your game and mental resilience.