Can changing how you think about stress make you healthier?

September 6, 2013

kelly mcgIn this fascinating TED talk, meditation teacher and health psychologist Kelly McGonigal presents evidence suggesting that stress itself isn’t harmful, but the belief that stress is harmful is! The belief that stress is harmful would then be a form of the nocibo effect — the opposite of the placebo effect — where believing something is harmful makes it so.

Can changing how you think about stress make you healthier? According to McGonigal the science says yes. When you change your mind about stress, you can change your body’s response to stress.

Believing that stress is normal and healthy protects your blood vessels, promotes healing in the heart, and leads to the release of oxytocin, a … Read more »

Seven steps to cultivating compassion, from Bob Thurman

October 4, 2012

It’s hard to always show compassion — even to the people we love, but Robert Thurman asks that we develop compassion for our enemies. He prescribes a seven-step meditation exercise to extend compassion beyond our inner circle.

Transcript: I want to open by quoting Einstein’s wonderful statement, just so people will feel at ease that the great scientist of the 20th century also agrees with us, and also calls us to this action. He said, “A human being is a part of the whole, called by us, the ‘universe,’ — a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings, as something separated from the rest, a kind of optical … Read more »