Coping with Difficulty

You can cope with the stress. Start here.

Coping with stress—we all need to do it. This collection of articles shares how. 

Illustration from Charles Bell (1774-1842): The Anatomy of the Brain, Explained in a Series of Engravings. London: T.N. Longman and O. Rees (etc.), 1802. 

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Stress plays an uncomfortably large role in our lives, affecting everything from home life to our exercise routines. Recently,The Lancet medical journal released a study demonstrating how work-related stress can raise the risk of heart attack by 23%. We're also learning more about how stress changes the way our brains work—even shrinking them, as one study notes. 

Not to get you worked up about the risks, but there are ways we can reduce stress in our daily lives. Even taking a few mindful breaths can help us get on the path of clearer thinking and being more present in our lives, despite the inevitable chaos. Here are a few selections from our website that discuss stress and ways to cope with it. 

Gina Biegel's stunning blog post, "Teens, stress, and suicide" proves that life's pressures are only starting earlier. Here's some guidance for people of all ages.

iBme and uBu teaches mindfulness to teensWatch as teens talk about how iBme's mindfulness retreats have helped them cope with stress and learn about self-compassion.

VIDEO: What to Expect from Meditation: How can meditation help you deal with whatever is stressing you out? Watch this short animated YouTube video, where clinical meditation consultant Andy Puddicombe tells you what you can expect from meditation.

Befriending Fear: Working with Worry and Anxiety: The fear-response is a powerful emotional and physiological reaction that can be triggered by more than just an imminent physical threat. Ronald D. Siegel, PsyD, explores the human response to fear, and shows us how mindfulness can help manage it.

Invite Kind Attention In: Susan M. Orsillo, PhD, and Lizabeth Roemer, PhD discuss developing the skills of mindfulness in order to bring kind attention into your daily life.

Intentional Acts of Kindness: (Pay particular attention to the section Practice being kind to yourself.) Kindness is often misunderstood as something superficial, and underestimated in terms of its power. Mary Ann Christie Burnside teaches us that the kindness we offer ourselves and others affects what happens in the very next moment. 

How Can Mindfulness Help Shyness?: Being shy doesn’t mean there’s something wrong with you. Author Steve Flowers explains how you can be shy and also be happy.

Mindfulness: The Basics: Now that you've read how mindfulness can help, perhaps you would like to learn more about it. Here's the perfect place to start. Whether you're new to mindfulness practice or not, this collection of articles is a great foundation for your daily practice.

Learning the Ropes: Barry Boyce reports on a program for teens that teaches mindfulness in a less conventional setting—at sea.