What to avoid when we’re under pressure

At our not-so-best, we become overwhelmed by our emotions and communicate them by inducing them in others. This is what happens when we feel angry and decide to pick a fight.

Lisa Damour

Lisa Damour wrote Under Pressure: Confronting the epidemic of stress and anxiety in girls before the pandemic. While it’s written for adults to help girls, I found so much of the advice helpful for myself.

This isn’t surprising since I’ve always felt reassured by Dr. Damour’s writing. Unlike some parenting books, I never feel judged or criticized by her. She provides a wonderful balance of real-life examples, research, and concrete suggestions. Her first book, Untangled, was a life-saver for me when my daughters entered middle school. This book, Under Pressure, has helped me through the pandemic. Of course, she has also written countless articles, many for the New York Times, that are also helpful as well.

Of the many helpful quotes, I chose this one because it is a reminder of what can happen when we don’t recognize we’re dealing with negative emotions. How it can seep out of us in unintended ways.

Another reassuring point of her book is in the first chapter where Dr. Damour reassures us that not all stress and anxiety are bad.

Healthy stress happens when we take on new challenges…. We don’t want our daughter’s stress level to be consistently too low or too high.

Anxiety is a gift…. The discomfort of anxiety compels us to take steps to reduce or avoid the threat.

Knitting Notes

I knit this emPower People bandana back in 2020. I didn’t have enough purple yarn on hand so I used a garter stitch instead of a brioche stitch.

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