Stress – A Blog Series. Part 1 – The Background

Exam Stress – A flipped approach

Eight months ago I started researching the phenomenon that is stress.

It began when I was looking at solutions for exam stress, as a continuance of my mental wellbeing exploits and social initiatives.

What followed was something I never expected: a fascinating journey which included completion of a neuroscience course.

The research included:, phone calls, visits, meetups, books, academic readings, desktop research, emails, podcasts, attendance at conferences, interaction on social media, talks in schools, workshops and focus groups in the community.

It also included cross sectional analysis of fields such as educational psychology, neuroscience, medicine, mental health, behavioural psychology, positive psychology, psychiatry, cognitive psychology, emotional intelligence, the arts, organisational psychology, coaching, sports psychology, the military, aviation, space and brain health.

In addition, the research brought me back to my role as a teacher of biology and physiology for health and fitness professionals. And as it turned out, this was where I made the most fascinating discovery: stress is a product – not a problem.

But most informative of all was the workshops and face to face talks with focus groups at grassroots level. In other words, listening to how stress was perceived and was impacting for people, companies and organisations.

In total, over 500 people were engaged ranging in ages from 13 to 70.

The blogs will cover topics such as: the background, the flipped approach, books, people, experts, facts, new science and solutions.

It will also conclude with my contribution and recommended solutions to the phenomenon that is exam stress. But take note, it advocates a flipped approach towards the understanding and management of stress, because for many years now, the commentary has told us stress is toxic. But I want to start a different narrative – one that new science supports, which highlights the benefits, beliefs and positivity that accompanies stress.

And as an extension – contribute to the Winning Minds mission for improving the wellbeing and performance of people in Ireland.

D O’Kelly – Founder – Winning Minds Movement