Copyright 2005 Kathy Paauw
I recently received this e-mail message about stress management (author unknown)Ö
------------------------ A lecturer, when explaining stress management to an audience, raised a glass of water and asked, "How heavy is this glass of water?" Answers called out ranged from 20g to 500g. The lecturer replied, "The absolute weight doesn't matter. It depends on how long you try to hold it."
"If I hold it for a minute, that's not a problem. If I hold it for an hour, I'll have an ache in my right arm. If I hold it for a day, you'll have to call an ambulance. "In each case, it's same weight, but longer I hold it, heavier it becomes."
He continued, "And that's way it is with stress management. If we carry our burdens all time, sooner or later, as burden becomes increasingly heavy, we won't be able to carry on." "As with glass of water, you have to put it down for a while and rest before holding it again. When we're refreshed, we can carry on with burden." -------------------------
What burden can you put down to help you reduce stress? Notice that I did not ask if you had stress. I assume you do. The question is, what are you doing to manage or reduce it?
Iíll bet that you can identify something generating stress in your life right now that you've been carrying for a while ... something that was probably stressing you a month ago, or even a year ago. So what are you prepared to do about it? Here are five tips to help you reduce stress.
1. Identify what is burdening you right now. What do you hate about your life? What are you tolerating? By stating what you hate or are putting up with in your present circumstances, you can then identify what you want. As you answer this question, consider each of categories mentioned below. Make a thorough list and be specific. This list is for your eyes only, so spill onto paper whatever you hate about your present circumstances, without trying to sugar-coat how you are feeling. Here are some examples:
* Relationships: I hate feeling like I always have to be right. I hate how my son never wants to spend time with me.
* Health & Wellness: I hate being 20 pounds overweight. I hate getting so out-of-breath when I take stairs. I hate that I am so stressed that I cannot fall asleep at night.
* Financial Health: I hate how I always defer my tax returns because I am so disorganized with my financial records. I hate how many tax deductions I forfeit because of my lousy record-keeping practices.
* Environment: I hate how my office is cluttered with piles of paper. I hate that I waste so much time looking for things. I hate how much money I waste because I have to buy something I have but cannot find. I hate that I cannot park my car in garage because of all junk stored in there.