Adrenaline Junkie Genetics?

I always considered myself a thrill seeker, but I never would classify myself as an adrenaline junkie.  When I took the risk taker test I got an 85,
which is pretty high.  When asked why I think I look for this rush, I didn’t know how to answer because I have always sought adventure.  I have ridden horses since I was seven, and have taken some risks on them (including a few trips to the hospital).  Since I came to Virginia I have gone skydiving twice, white water rafted down 5+ rapids three times, I go camping constantly, and have done many things on a whim.

However, no one else in my family searches for adventure like I do.  Most of the time, they think I am insane for doing what I volunteer to do.  I wonder if being an adrenaline junkie has any genetic qualities, or if it is based more off of the environment you are raised in.  I found some articles that say it may be hereditary, but there is nothing definite.

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Religion as Insurance

In times of tragedy many people respond by buying insurance or relying heavily on their social support.  Economists are starting to look at religious beliefs as both a social support and a tangible benefit, like insurance.  Religion may not only act as a stress relief in faith-based worship, it may also work to help people recovery from accidents and tragedies.

This article in the New York Time explains the work of three economists, Dehejia, DeLeire, and Luttmer.  They look at the amount of money given to the church based on income and the subject’s personal happiness.  Their results were not conclusive, because in times of tragedies the congregation is destroyed as well.  This would leave the church unable to help all those in need.  What about the church as a whole not just one local church?

http://www.nytimes.com/2005/09/08/business/08scene.html

Stress and Helping Others

     Tonight my sociology class met outside of our normal class period to do something I think was extremely special.  We met with the Hanover ARC citizens for a night of fun and games.  The Hanover ARC is a group of fully functioning, mentally disabled adults in the area.  We all had an Easter egg hunt and we decorated Easter eggs together.  At first I was extremely nervous about what would happen, I didn’t want to say or do anything wrong.  However, as the night progressed I became more relaxed with the group.  Overall, I really enjoyed myself.  I noticed at one point that working and helping with others really seemed to lessen my stress level.  Once I got back to my room I looked up if stress level is affected by helping others.  I found this article and found it really interesting.  The stress level is lessened in both those helping and those receiving the help.

http://stress.about.com/od/positiveattitude/qt/helping.htm

5 Ways to Calm Down Quick

     I was looking for different things to blog and was trying every different combination of words I knew related to stress.  I tried to connect them to something in my life, but would always come up short.  Finally, I looked at my upcoming weeks as the school year winds down and I realized that I have a TON of presentations coming up in the next few weeks.  I know that no matter how much I practice I am going to get nervous and stressed out, so I looked for articles that would supply a quick remedy to my gitters.  This article provides five ways to calm down quickly in a stressful situation.  They include: take a walk, take a breath, take a mental break, reframe your situation and progressive muscle relaxation (where you tighten all the muscles in your body one at a time).  I thought this would be helpful to a lot of people since many of us will have an increased stress level these next few weeks.

http://stress.about.com/od/tensiontamers/f/calm_down.htm

Stress in College

    As I started to look for things to blog about I found these two articles that I think will benefit all of us students.  One is on the causes of stress in college and the other is how to reduce that stress.  All the examples of how to relieve the stress seem a lot easier said than done.  I know that, personally, I have said that I would do all of these things, but I never seem to follow through 100%.  However, with all the information we are learning in the class I think I will take these recommendations more seriously.  I don’t want stress to be the cause of ulcers or heart disease when I am older.

http://stress.about.com/od/studentstress/a/stress_college.htm

http://stress.about.com/od/studentstress/ss/college_stress.htm


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