Stress Myth #2: Human Beings Suffer From Stress

by Doc Orman, M.D.

This is the third in a series of posts on common myths about stress. Links to the first two posts in this series are listed below:

Stress Myth #1:  Stress Exists

Stress Relief Principle #2: Stress is Just a Word

In this post, I’m going to explain why human beings never, ever suffer from stress.

Please understand that when I point out “stress is just a word,” I am not trying to convince you that any “stress” you experience isn’t real or doesn’t truly exist for you.  

All I’m suggesting is that whenever you think you are “suffering from stress,” you are really suffering from something else. 

And that something else can take many forms.   

For example, when we say we are “suffering from stress,” we often mean: 

  • We are suffering from anxiety.
  • We are feeling frustrated or angry.
  • We are excessively tired or feel overwhelmed.
  • We have tense muscles in our body. 
  • We just lost our job or our home.
  • We just lost someone or something dear to us.   

“Stress” Is A Word That Stands For…

 

You see, the real truth about “stress” is that it is a word we use to stand for many different problems in our lives. 

We use the word “stress” to stand for :

  • Emotional problems
  • Physical ailments
  • Financial or work problems
  • Interpersonal problems
  • Self-esteem problems
  • And hundreds of other problems as well.

 

Therefore, whenever we say we are “suffering from stress”—we are not.  

We are suffering from very real problems in our life. And, these problems are not just words…they really do exist.

Now, you might be thinking “what’s the big deal whether you say you are suffering from stress or you say you are suffering from problems?  Isn’t this just a trivial semantic point?”

Well, it’s NOT a trivial point, and it can make a HUGE difference in how well you are able to deal with “stress” in your life.  We’ll begin to explore some of these benefits in the next post in this series.

So, if you want to become a master at relieving stress in your life, it’s important to understand that “stress” is just a word and that human beings never, ever suffer from stress.  

The twin ideas that stress is a “thing” or “condition” that actually exists and that human beings actually suffer from stress are two of the biggest myths about stress that may be keeping you from understanding stress correctly and from dealing with it most effectively.

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

I May 21, 2013 at 8:11 AM

Hi there.

You say beings never suffer from stress and yet all of your descriptions cause a stress on the body, therefore beings do indeed suffer from stress.

Namaste
I

Reply

Doc Orman, M.D. May 21, 2013 at 2:42 PM

Namaste: Human beings suffer from problems, which can indeed affect the body. Stress is just a word we invented to stand for many different types of problems. It is not a problem itself.

Reply

I May 22, 2013 at 4:23 PM

Thank you Doc, I do understand what you are trying to say, human beings suffer from problems, and those problems cause a stress on the body, then beings do suffer from stress. They suffer from the stress of the problems.

Stress meaning pressure or strain, beings suffer with problems, problems cause pressure or strain, therefore beings do indeed suffer from stress…..

The stress of the pressure or strain is a problem when one cannot fix the problem the person is suffering from, therefore the stress continues on, and is very real, not just a word.

Reply

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