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LLG #5 - Online Learning Module Comparison

LLG #5:  Christopher Biehl, Jessica Boland and La Shaun Gould

Our group viewed multiple learning modules on stress and anxiety. In reviewing, comparing, and contrasting our findings, we found that these modules all looked at stress from a different vantage point pending the speaker. This was great as a group assignment as we all looked at these videos from our own individual vantage points as well.

Comparisons we found with the module How to Make Stress Your Friend was how it explored a new way to view stress in the light of recent academic research. Rather than view stress as bad, stress should be viewed as helping prepare the body to meet the challenge (i.e. courage), this also has the biological effect of reversing constriction on the heart vessels. Furthermore, by acting compassionately people who experience stress are no more likely to die from it than those that do not experience stress. Increased stress in the body while also having the mindset that stress is harmful to the body leads to more health issues, research shows. Therefore, by believing that stress is good for you and by acting compassionately people can turn stress from a negative into a positive. In contrast, it never truly gave steps on “how to make stress your friend” but simply stated to stop stressing because it will lead to negative health issues which is easier said than done.

The module All It Takes is 10 Mindful Minutes spoke about maintaining and rejuvenating the mind while also living in the present moment. It explained relaxing the mind to become a focused mind and finding a sense of balance of focused relaxation while under stress to help control this. This talk also spoke of an anxious thought leading to increased anxiety then leads to the person being anxious about being anxious and not being able to control and conquer the thought that was the original trigger. Therefore, this module advocates for taking 10 minutes out of the day to just sit and think about the present moment.

The video we viewed How to Stay Calm When You Know You’ll be Stressed spoke of having a designated place for everything to help decrease other everyday stressors that could exacerbate the primary stressor we know is coming. This will help a person to stay calm in other ways that we can help and control in order to help decrease stress and anxiety on situations we cannot control. Under stress we, as people, do not think clearly as a result of cortisol being released in the brain. Therefore, this educational module spoke of helping to think ahead as a means to decrease as much stress as possible.

As a group, we all agreed that three negative points we saw in these modules were that not all of the educational speakers were informative, some presenters were better than others in their delivery and audience engagement, and not all presenters actually offered concrete steps on how to implement what they are advocating for. The Edx course: Mindfulness and Resilience to Stress at Work spoke to a variety of mindfulness, including yoga, zen, and meditation, as means to help decrease or eliminate stress. As a group, we agreed this is hard to do before work, pending your job, to help decrease stress prior to starting your work day. Acting professional on the job has been researched to showing how people handle stress well at work. If you want to maintain a certain reputation you will handle your stress quietly, well, and in a professional way than compared to handling stress outside of the work place. Handling stress in the workplace in a healthier fashion was also linked to having the social connection, support, and help from others opposed to handling it independently which causes more anxiety. We all agreed this course was much harder to become engaged in and did not hold the attention of the audience as well as the educational modules we previously viewed. In summary, there was at least one positive take away from each module and the MOOC, but the lack of connectivism can make it difficult to stay engaged in something of this nature.

References:

     Keltner, D. & Simon-Thomas, E. (2019). Mindfulness and Resilience to Stress at Work. Retrieved from: https://www.edx.org/course/mindfulness-resilience-stress-work-uc-berkeleyx-gg202x

     Levittin, D. (2015). How to Stay Calm When You Know You’ll be Stressed. https://www.ted.com/talks/daniel_levitin_how_to_stay_calm_when_you_know_you_ll_be_stressed?referrer=playlist-talks_to_help_you_manage_stress

     McGonigal, K. (2013). How to Make Stress Your Friend. Retrieved from: https://www.ted.com/talks/kelly_mcgonigal_how_to_make_stress_your_friend?referrer=playlist-talks_to_help_you_manage_stress

     Puddicomble, A. (2012). All it Takes is 10 Mindful Minutes. Retrieved from: https://www.ted.com/talks/andy_puddicombe_all_it_takes_is_10_mindful_minutes?referrer=playlist-talks_to_help_you_manage_stress

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