Summary of How to Stay Calm When You Know You’ll Be Stressed

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How to Stay Calm When You Know You’ll Be Stressed summary
Neuroscientist Daniel Levitin offers some life hacks to help you negotiate decisions under high stress.


8 Overall

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Are you good at making decisions under pressure? If not, congratulations: You’re human. High-stress situations trigger the release of cortisol, which inhibits rational thinking. Neuroscientist Daniel Levitin recommends practicing “prospective hindsight,” also called “pre-mortem” planning, to make the right, logical choice when life goes awry. getAbstract believes everyone in this high-stress world will find Levitin’s life hacks helpful.

In this summary, you will learn

  • How cortisol inhibits rational thinking and
  • How “prospective hindsight” and “pre-mortem” planning can help you make smarter decisions in high-stress situations.


One bitterly cold night, neuroscientist Daniel Levitin arrived home to find that he was locked out. He couldn’t spend the night at a friend’s because he had to catch a flight the next morning and he needed his passport, which was inside his home. Calling a locksmith would be too expensive and time consuming...
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About the Speaker

Daniel Levitin is a neuroscientist at McGill University and author of The Organized Mind.

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