Stress – a rising tide of dread & panic OR an opportunity to change

Stress is a burden on a persons emotional & mental well-being, bought about by life’s demands on our time and the way we organise ourselves. This demand causes constant pressure on us to perform, to assist, to do, to create, to finish, to prepare, according to “Expectations” we “allow ourselves” to be obligated to.

We hold down full-time jobs whilst raising families or caring for elderly parents. Add to that, time with spouses who may also have a full-time job, catching up with friends, exercise regimes….. and then there’s the shopping, the washing, the lawns…. Some of us care for people with mental or medical health issues, for example autism or cancer. All this for some is a daily routine.

There comes a time when the twain of emotion & mind begin to disagree & refuse to meet. This internal turmoil can lead to the body having to hold the fort until those two get it together. If we’re not paying attention, sooner or later “Body” will let us know that it can’t hold the pressure anymore……BOOM!!! It may express it as a full blown anxiety-panic attack with palpitations, chest pain, nausea, breathlessness & an overwhelming fear of dying OR a potential cancer scare, depression or suicide.

What if the “Act of Stress” is our body telling us to stop, take a good hard look at ourselves & is inviting us to create change, to listen carefully. What if it is saying: “I am not a robot, I am flesh & blood”, “I am unable to sustain the demands of your decisions to perform any longer”.

What if body is saying, “I did not sign a Deed of Expectation”, “Are these expectations yours or someone else’s?” If yours, please rewrite your list. If someone else’s, please refrain from acting on my behalf without my permission.”

As adults we allow ourselves to set personal, family and work obligations being a course of action a person is morally or legally bound to. Ask yourself,  “From whom did you acquire these morals?”, “Are you following them out of blind duty to past generations or society?”, “Have you considered each one in reflection to your time and what’s best for you?

Over nearly three years, I had experienced some 6-8 panic/anxiety attacks a day (symptoms described above in paragraph 3). I asked myself these questions over the past two years and my goodness, did I get a wake up call.

In summary – It’s not enough to eat healthy, get exercise & think positive. If we aren’t listening to ourselves internally & mindfully, Nothing changes & Stress rules constant.