Published on April 15, 2013 by Ira Hyman in Mental Mishaps

Mindfulness may restore stress reduced mental capacity


Stress is bad. In the immediate moment and over the long term, stress attacks your ability to think by shrinking your mental capacity. But some simple techniques may restore the mental capacity that stress steals away.

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The effect of stress on mental capacity has been studied in many different forms. You can look at the impacts of overall life stress, manipulated experimental stress, and directly administered stresshormones.

All forms of stress seem to impact mental capacity. For example, Klein and Boals (2001) asked people about the number and impact of life stressors. Life stressors are those challenges we all face from time to time. More life stressors resulted in reduced mental capacity, particularly on the more challenging measures of executive working memory capacity. When the going gets tough, your mental capacity gets limited.

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