Too often we feel the pressures of our relationships and environments asking us to be someone we are not. The science of personality is enabling us to listen to the voice within to understand our stress better.

May Sarton understood the pressures that people feel in being true to themselves:

Now I become myself. It’s taken
Time, many years and places;
I have been dissolved and shaken,
Worn other people’s faces,
Run madly, as if Time were there,
Terribly old, crying a warning,
“Hurry, you will be dead before–“

And while poets can touch places in us that stir us to think of a better life, it is difficult to quantify those pressures in our fast paced environments. Part of the science of behaviors identifies the internal stress we feel between “how we want to do things naturally” and “how we feel asked to do things practically.”

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Graph 1 depicts how we experience the external and internal pressures to perform, while Graph 2 reveals how we naturally want to do things. Any variance of more than 10 points is an area for potential stress.

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