Recap: The Stress Continuum Copy

The association between the level of stress and mind-body performance is represented as an inverted U-shaped curve (Yerkes-Dodson law). Initially, the higher the stress, the better the performance, until stress passes the apex of peak performance, at which point more stress impairs performance.

Yerkes-Dodson Law inverted u-shaped curve illustration. X axis is stress and y axis is performance.
The Yerkes-Dodson Law

The accumulation of trauma and other stressors across the lifespan is known as allostatic load.

If stress is too high for too long, it becomes ‘toxic.’ Neuroendocrine stress responses become over-sensitized, which leads to changes in the function of the brain and organ systems.