Eustress and Distress

Stress is a normal part of everyday life. We all feel stress at some level, whether we’ve simply gotten out of bed a little bit later than we should have or have a pressing deadline in the office. It helps to understand that there are two very different types of stress: eustress and distress.

What is Eustress?

Eustress is a very positive type of stress. For example, you may feel a little nervous yet elated about your upcoming wedding, a newborn baby, or a brand new job. The stimulation you are experiencing causes your adrenaline to begin flowing, but more often than not positive stress is pretty easy to deal with. It’s a sensation that most people welcome.

Understanding Distress

Distress, or negative stress, obviously isn’t as welcome. Perhaps knowing you’re going to start a new job isn’t as exciting as you thought. Instead you spend your nights wondering if you’re good enough, if you’re going to be late on your first day, or if you’re going to make a fool out of yourself during your first meeting. This type of stress may make you want to run away from the situation and may even cause physical reactions such as fatigue, dizziness, and anxiety.

Stress is stress, regardless of which type you’re experiencing. In the end, however, stress is a result of the way you choose to react to a situation. While it may seem uncontrollable, you certainly have the tools to maintain a healthy mindset throughout any challenge, just as you have the ability to use anger management techniques when you feel upset.

Over the coming weeks we’ll take a closer look at stress and some of the things you can do to control and manage it. Until then, have a relaxing weekend!

Thanks again,


Sean McPheat

Managing Director

MTD Training   

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Updated on: 24 October, 2008

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