No Stress 2018!

You might not believe this, having just wrapped up the holiday season, but there’s no such thing as stress. At least that was the assertion of the late self-help author Dr. Wayne Dyer, who wrote, “The truth is that there is no actual stress or anxiety in the world; it’s your thoughts that create these false beliefs. You can’t package stress, touch it or see it. There are only people engaged in stressful thinking.” 

At TEDGlobal 2013, psychologist Kelly McGonigal described a study that changed the way she thought about stress: 

“This study tracked 30,000 adults in the United States for eight years, and they started by asking people, ‘How much stress have you experienced in the last year?’ They also asked, ‘Do you believe that stress is harmful for your health?’ And then they used public death records to find out who died. Some bad news first. People who experienced a lot of stress in the previous year had a 43 percent increased risk of dying. But that was only true for the people who also believed that stress is harmful for your health.” She went on to explain that the stress response pumps out the “feel good” hormone oxytocin, which provides many health benefits and physically strengthens your heart. Furthermore, she said, another study showed that “people who spent time caring for others showed absolutely no stress-related increase in dying. Zero. Caring created resilience.”

So what’s all the stress over stress? Much of the stress we feel may have to do with how we view stress, our limiting beliefs and our lifestyle habits, as explained in our January feature article, “Dial Down Stress,” page 24. This month, instead of focusing on those same old New Year’s resolutions, perhaps we could improve many areas of our lives at once by changing how we view and manage stress. How many bad habits, health issues and even financial problems could we eliminate by addressing stress first—first reducing stress by eliminating stressful thoughts, and then embracing the stress response in a positive way?

Every month, we at Natural Awakenings provide you support, inspiration and assistance with information about new resources, workshops, advice and helpful hints to keep you on track to a healthier lifestyle. We offer two stress-free ways to receive your monthly issue—either by mail ($30 per year) or by email subscription—or, as always, you can pick up the magazine locally for free at your favorite distribution spot. Check out our new online link at to find a Natural Awakenings distribution partner near you.

For even more support, plan to get inspired, revitalized and rejuvenated at the third annual Emerald Coast Holistic Health Expo, March 10-11. This year we are excited to introduce a new stage featuring demonstrations, fashion shows and live performances, as well as the “No Stress Zone” private session sanctuary, and to double the number of our exhibitors, who come from all over the country. Check out the next month’s Natural Awakenings for a full line-up of presenters and practitioner panels. It’s our goal to make 2018 your happiest, healthiest, least-stressed year ever.​

Happy New Year,​

Daralyn and Scott Chase
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