We need to be dealing with our stress like it is a condition, not like it is a side effect of the conditions we live in. Stress is the cause of most illnesses and chronic diseases.
We need to assess what is worthy of our stress and what is not, and reduce it when we can.
Our fight flight response is meant to be triggered by a tiger chasing us down, not a bill hitting our door mats.
Ask yourself, what is worthy of your body going into adrenaline override, where you cannot think, your hippocampus loses synaptic connections and literally creates gaps in your brain. Your blood cannot circulate because you cannot breathe properly and all organs shut down normal function for survival mode.
Stress is not always necessary and is normally an accumulation of many little things stacked upon one another, imagine a shelf holding too much stuff, at one point it just falls down.
The thing is, we need to look at our shelf from a position of strength, calm and composure. Then we can stack it neatly, and deal with things and then take them down.
Maybe I get a haircut, I go the hairdresser that gives you a really good head massage whilst she washes it, and whilst she washes it, we tell ourselves a story of how competent we are, instead of how incompetent we are. That way we are refreshed, we will go home and dust our shelf, and straighten out some of these things on it, maybe take a few off and put them neatly somewhere else, on our all sorted happy shelf.
If we stop telling our children, ‘in a minute’ and sit down with them for ten instead, we will unpack some guilt, maybe even enjoy watching them play, watch their little faces light up and laugh, we can feel their weightlessness instead of remaining in our heavy worlds.
If we take the time to point out as many beautiful things as we can on a journey somewhere, we have used that brain space to notice miracles and wonder, and maybe when we fall asleep that night, our brain has something pretty to relay to us, instead of the constant worry it normally churns.
How about we spend time thinking about fond memories whilst doing the dishes, about how we made someone laugh, and what their face looked like as the creases contracted and fell in the joy of our company. Instead of hitting ourselves with the weight of our mistakes from the past, for all of those moments we could have done better, there are definitely, I bet you, HUNDREDS AND HUNDREDS when you DID!
Our mind will keep spinning what we put on the record, and whatever you are thinking about, you will emotionally and physically feel, and it will either bliss you out or stress you out.
Now I am not advocating a world of ignorance is bliss, we all have some kind of wonky shelving and need to get the hammer and nails out But enjoying the moments when we are not directly dealing with our shelf is what we need, we should not be worrying about our shelf when we are not working on it.
When we do things that make us feel better, we can tackle all of the shit that makes us feel worse. It is that simple, if we only focus on worse, we struggle to keep our heads above the water. Not realising that we can just start to swim with the current and get happily swept along, or even float lightly instead of swimming against it, and feeling exhausted, we can free up all of that tension and flow easily.
When we reduce our stress, we have oxygen in our brain, this magical oxygen allows us to think, and we get to fix our shelf, straighten out the bits on it, prioritise them, and take them off when they are done, leaving everything neat. You cannot do this when you are stressed because you do not physically have enough oxygen in your brain to let you think about how to do it.
So taking time to relax, helps you out, massively. It gives you a moment to breathe.
Stressing out makes no sense, unless you are in a survival situation. Easing your to do list by taking time to enjoy your thoughts and world is productive and does make sense.