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E. HELP is on It's Way

Narrator: This is Science Today. A University of California, Irvine psychologist has developed the Health Enhancing Lifestyle Program, or HELP, to train people to function better under duress. Dr. Salvatore Maddi says HELP teaches people to develop skills and attitudes needed to cope with stressful situations.

Maddi: The coping skills are probably the easiest starting point. Basically what you need to do there is make a list of all the circumstances in your life that seem stressful to you. Try to ask yourself whether they are stressful because there's a big change going on or whether they're stressful because there's kind of ongoing conflict between what you want and what you get.

Narrator: Maddi admits people often say they're too overwhelmed to go through such a list.

Maddi: Part of the reason they are overwhelmed and too busy is that they haven't dealt specifically and effectively with the stresses one at a time. Once you start doing that, you realize what a difference it makes.

Narrator: Maddi's program is based on a 30-minute hardiness survey he developed to measure how stressed a person is and how the body responds to stress. For Science Today, I'm Larissa Branin.