Affirming your values to reduce stress: Much more than cheerleading

By William Seidman Stephanie West Allen is a tremendous source of good information about neuroscience and mediation, and has also written about the relationship between affirming one’s values and reducing work stress. A research report that really aligns with our findings, “Affirmation of Personal Values Buffers Neuroendocrine and Psychological Stress Responses,” details the impact of personal affirmations on stress levels. The study was conducted at UCLA and UC Santa Barbara by Psychologist J. David Creswell, et al. The research found that stress is reduced when people affirm their values before doing a stressful activity. Work is very stressful for many people, which is why we have people begin by affirming in writing and verbally their commitment to creating some type of greater good from their work. This creates engagement and stress visibly decreases. It’s a motivator, too. We’ve also found that review of a passionate statement from the positive deviants by a user of the system creates engagement, which reduces stress, and also seem to positively motivate people. Can a mirror neuron effect occur solely though contact with positive deviant language?


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