I think stress is pretty American.

Maybe not exclusively American but American nonetheless. We all handle stress differently, but a common thread is that we usually try to avoid it. Or, pretend it isn't there: 'I'm going to be relaxed!' 'I'm not going to be afraid!' and so on. But, I was thinking this morning that since energy can neither be created nor destroyed, maybe there are emotional implications for this as well.

Maybe the best American attitude –– New American attitude –– is to accept the stress and just do something productive with it. Maybe the stress comes at you regardless but can be pointed wherever you choose.

The alternative to this is a slew of negative moves: feeling apathetic, fearful, unconfident, etc. None of which are particularly American. We don't say our country should stand for apathy and fear...

I think there's something foundational about how we define ourselves and our country; if this is so, shouldn't we roll the thought back even further, so that it starts with how we handle the daily stress that comes our way?

Brandon Cohn