A clinical trial to determine the benefits of yoga and meditation for handling stress has inadvertently stumbled upon an even better approach. The findings came about almost by accident as researcher Dr. Mary Greene interviewed hundreds of stressed people who would recount to her the various petty concerns they were allowing to compromise their immune system.
“I was quite stressed myself because I was so worried about getting this study right. Then one day it occurred to me that people probably wouldn’t even read my publication anyway, and I found myself not giving a flying fuck anymore. The stress literally melted away!”
Dr. Greene continued interviewing subjects, but with a carefree abandon she had not felt before that ironically increased her productivity. Most of her subjects concerns suddenly seemed trivial and unnecessary, such as one individual who was terribly anxious about fixing a small dent on his car, even though he had no plans to sell it. With the newfound freedom that comes with not giving a rat’s ass, she didn’t hold back with her personal opinions.
“It’s basically a fucking box that gets you from A to B. So as long as it drives well and is street legal, why the need to pop veins in your forehead?”
The man had a complete change of heart, and her continued blunt confrontations would cause many stressed-out people to realize that they were getting upset about things that simply don’t matter much if at all.
“So your brother-in-law doesn’t like you. Do you see him much? No? Then why give a shit? Can’t match the fine china plate you accidentally dropped? Does it have genuine sentimental value or did you buy it just to show off to your dinner guests? Because they honestly couldn’t care less if you served food on something you picked up at the Dollar Tree as long as you keep the vino flowing. Get the picture now?”
Dr. Greene is certainly not advocating never giving a shit about anything, and points out that stress can be a motivator to do things like pay bills on time to avoid late fees. Her study also revealed that swearing has powerful stress relief benefits too. She therefore advises people who decide not to give a shit about something to broadcast it as loudly and crudely as possible.