If You're In Control, You're Not As Stressed As The Rest
Are you the type of boss who tackles way too many email, sits in way
too many meetings, and even thinks that suppressing one's bowel movements
in order to keep moving up the ladder is totally okay? Then you'll want to keep reading.
A new meta-study shows that while military officers, government officials, and business leaders might tons of demands bearing on their shoulders, at a physiological level they're actually much less stressed than their underlings.
When stress happens, cortisol and adrenaline increase your heart rate,
glucose releases energy, and your body shuts down everything in order to
focus on surviving the situation at hand. Experiencing this too often
can lead to things like heart disease and diabetes.
have more control over their surroundings, and those who lack this
control are the ones more likely to have high blood pressure, a weaker
immune system, and problems with sleep. Over at the Scientific American, writer Keith Payne deciphers the real meaning behind when executives complain about being stressed:
They may have more emails in their inbox than they can get to. They may work long hours. But in most cases, they can say no to requests and they can decide when and how to deal with challenges. They have much more control over how their lives are arranged than does the secretary who schedules their appointments or the janitor who cleans their office.
So if you're a leader and you're in control, you're actually less exhausted and less stressed even when you have more stuff on your plate. As for the rest of us underlings, Payne says "The professional class may be stressed in their way... but the powerless are stressed in the way that kills."