The Psychophysiology of Stress Management: How To Do It and Why It Works

Paul Lehrer (Psychiatry)

Students will be given an introduction to psychophysiological aspects of stress, and will learn a number of well validated techniques for managing stress more effectively in their own lives. They will get an introduction to the autonomic nervous system, how the sympathetic and parasympathetic systems are regulated, how they are affected by stress, and how stress management methods can help regulate them. Topics will include an introduction to homeostasis and allostasis, deep muscle relaxation, hypnosis and self hypnosis, mindfulness, and cognitive restructuring. Students will learn to use each of these approaches in their own lives. They will take daily data on their own experiences in managing stress, and will write a short paper on stress management based on their own data.