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How much stress is too much?

How much stress is too much?

Harvard Business Review 58(5): 86-92

"There is no question that a certain amount of stress is good," says one of the chief executives quoted in this article. "If I have a particularly easy week, I can feel an ache or pain, but if I get really busy, I feel really much better." But when managers feel themselves under too much stress, the executive adds pessimistically, then "not only will they burn out in time, but they get erratic and their judgment goes all to hell." These insights reflect one of the authors' main themes: medical research finds stress productive up to a point (which of course varies with the manager), but beyond that point it can be disastrous. The trouble in corporate life seems to be that leaders appreciate the first part of the relationship but not the second. As a consequence, both individiuals and organizations suffer--and suffer greatly. This penalty is unnecessary, the authors believe, because a newly tested, proved, and relatively simple approach to managing stress is available to any corporation that wants to use it.

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Accession: 046280312

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PMID: 10247959

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