They discovered that the men who had just gone through a stressful experience were more likely to extend trust to a stranger and were more likely to be perceived as trustworthy generally – stress had made this group of men more prosocial.
Try out this reflection exercise: Review the list of stress response styles and circle the one or ones that match your typical response to stress and challenge.
What role models, life experiences, and relationships have influenced your stress response style?
What do you like about how you respond to stress?
What could be improved? Is there a different way of responding to work or life challenges that would be more beneficial or productive for you?
Just knowing that there are a variety of ways to respond to stress was enormously helpful for me in terms of thinking about my own stress response style. Being able to view adversities as challenges (rather than threats) and knowing that your stress response is meant to help you connect with others can really make a difference in how you process stress moving forward.
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**Except as otherwise noted, the information in this article comes from Dr. Kelly McGonigal’s book The Upside of Stress and her online course of the same name at Stanford University.
Written by: Paula Davis Originally appeared on: Psychology Today Republished with permission.