From TED: On a reporting trip, journalist Jean-Paul Mari had a face-to-face encounter with a senseless, random death, beginning his acquaintance with a phantom that has haunted us since ancient times: post-traumatic stress. "What is this thing that can kill you without leaving any visible scars?" Mari asks. In this probing talk, he searches for answers in the aftermath of horror and trauma — and comes to a very human conclusion: we must talk.
From SharpBrains: “If the brain is experiencing highly physiologically arousing emotions associated with stress, then our first instinct will be to stay away from excitement and seek comfort instead. Studies have shown that primates under stress, for example, will not pursue new territories or mates. Under stress, humans also hang on to the familiar. Once the brain calms, however, it becomes prone to boredom. It will then begin to seek arousal in the form of dopamine, from the excitement pathway." — Baba Shiv: How Do You Find Breakthrough Ideas? (Stanford Business)
From Paul Sullivan at ChangeThis: Being great under pressure is hard work. This is part of the reason why we are so impressed by people who seem immune to choking. These people come through in the clutch when others don’t. If they’re business leaders, they become gurus other executives want to emulate. In politics, the person who runs the gauntlet wins the election, but if he can do so in a particularly cunning way, he becomes an example of strategic excellence. In combat, it is the leaders who come under fire and get their men to safety who are recognized as war heroes. If the people are sporting figures, their triumphs become legendary. We are so fascinated by these feats that we have created a nearly mythical aura around clutch performers.
From SharpBrains: With a better understanding of the neurobiology of stress, the LD — ADHD — stress connection becomes clear. Students with learning disabilities or ADHD, confronted with the stress created by exposure to tasks that are in reality or in their perception too difficult (and thus threatening), exhibit the protective behavior of any organism under extreme stress: They fight, they flee, or they freeze. When these kids don’t understand why they can’t do what other kids can do (master the stressor), and they can’t see any way to get out of a situation that won’t go away, they begin to shut down. Trapped in this situation, from which there is no apparent exit, they may lash out with words or fists. They may tear up papers, throw books, or overturn desks. As much as they love their teacher, they may bite the hand that feeds them. If they override their impulse to act up or act out to escape the stress caused by a feeling of cognitive incompetence, these kids may freeze like the proverbial deer in the headlights.
From SharpBrains: A 6-part series on the Neurobiology of Stress, excerpted from the recent book Nowhere to Hide: Why Kids with ADHD and LD Hate School and What We Can Do About It, by SharpBrains contributor Dr. Jerome Schultz.
From Adam Frank on NPR: Your time, our time, delivered through digital devices calling out in nanosecond cadences, has only existed for a sliver of human history. Rushing through our days, we can barely recognize this new time for what it really is: an invention that is pushing society to its breaking point.
From Henrik Edberg: One of the most interesting things about improving life and growing is to make the regular day even better. Reaching your goals, having really special or awesome days and learning to handle bad times and slumps are of course important but many days in life are spent in-between that. And one of the most common problems today, maybe more than ever, is that the regular day gets dragged down from maybe a good morning into a day of stress, overwhelm and being busy but barely moving forward.