The truth is, stress will always be a faithful companion.
Regardless of circumstances, wealth, or intelligence – we will feel stress.
FRENCH FRY GUY
Take the french-fry guy’s job. His job is very stressful. The demand is constant. The never-ending need for fresh fries never lets up. From start to end of shift. Fry. Fry! FRY! Of course this only intensifies when oil pops, spurts, and scalds the fryer’s skin. But guess what? Those customers still demand fresh, warm, salty fries. Never a moment of peace to stop, breath, or even tend to the skin that found that hot oil. He hates his job, “If only I worked in an office. THEN I wouldn’t have this nightmare”.
Let’s jump over to that coveted job. The office job. The one where the office-worker has a stressful demanding micro-managing boss. The workload, the phone, the expectations never let up. AND to make matters worse the air above her cubical blows cold air in the winter and warm in the summer. The worker thinks, “It’s just too much to take, if only I had the easy job of my boss’.”
THE OFFICE BOSS
The boss is stressed to the limit. It’s beginning to show as agitation to the staff. Stressful mental exhaustion continues while trying to keep the business afloat. Trying to keep the employee’s jobs. It’s been a struggle to keep staff motivated and not show them just how bad the company is doing. Petty complaints of the office being too cold feels like the straw that will break this camel’s back. It’s been a long hard winter, paying the bills to keep the lights on and making payroll has been a struggle. The stress never lets up. The boss thinks, “If they only knew my stress…some days I wish I could just close the doors and only have to worry about frying french-fires down the street.”
It really doesn’t matter where you are in life, you’ll encounter stress. And unless you deal with stress, it’s like leaving a doorway unlocked and unarmed straight into your precious soul. How we deal with stress can make us an easy target, and become the best way for a thief to settle in and steal our internal peace.
I’m not here to tell you how to deal with stress–mostly because there are a gazillion-and-one places to find different ways to cope for every personality type. What works for one person will not work for another. We’re all wired to healthy-stress-release in very different ways. And different days and moods require different tactics.
I have a list of things I know works when I’m getting into stress mode. For example: some days, dancing is an amazing stress relief for me. Other days I find ease in breathing for 3 minutes, a quick chat with an encouraging real (not a Pollyanna) friend, playing piano, making art. Fifteen minutes in a book. Or a lunch break away from the computer (or hot oil) and just sit outside, listening to nature. In short, if there is any advice I have on stress relief is to have a known bag of tricks that works for you and your precious soul.
And my friend, here’s the deal — start now on that bag of tricks. Write a list of things that work for you. Because when you’re stressed–you completely absolutely forget your common sense. You short-circuit. You can’t even recall what brings you peace. (except food… we always turn to food…or maybe that’s just me). BUT, if you have a list of your “peace makers” – you are ready and armed for what happens in everyday life.
Oh and that list… seriously use it, put it on your phone, in your backpack/purse, tack it on your board. Share it with others who are short circuiting too. But above all – you just need to have it. Ready.To.Use.
So sweet soul, get to writing. You will be thankful you have it, when you need it.