Apr 092011
 

Like many, I receive little stories and pictures that bounce around the Internet. My friend, Larry Allen, sent this one to me, perfectly timed on a day when stress was weighing me down. I am going to quote the whole story word-for-word.

A young lady confidently walked around the room while leading and explaining stress management to an audience; with a raised glass of water, and everyone knew she was going to ask the ultimate question, ‘half empty or half full?’…she fooled them all…”How heavy is this glass of water?,” she inquired with a smile.

Answers called out ranged from 8 oz. to 20 oz.

She replied, “The absolute weight doesn’t matter. It depends on how long I 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 the same weight, but the longer I hold it, the heavier it becomes.” She continued, “and that’s the way it is with stress. If we carry our burdens all the time, sooner or later, as the burden becomes increasingly heavy, we won’t be able to carry on.”

“As with the 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 the burden – holding stress longer and better each time practiced. So, as early in the evening as you can, put all your burdens down. Don’t carry them through the evening and into the night…pick them up tomorrow.

Whatever burdens you’re carrying now, let them down for a moment. Relax, pick them up later after you’ve rested. Life is short. Enjoy it and the now ‘supposed’ stress that you’ve conquered!”

Wow! I don’t think there is much to say to follow up on this story. I am guilty of carrying my stress with me where ever I go, for days and weeks at a time. This is something I am going to work on. There is plenty of stress to be left places, especially at the office.

Here is one trick I have used in the name of productivity, but has helped me leave the stress at the office. At the end of the day, just before going home, I leave myself a little note with the top 3 – 5 tasks that I need to complete the following day. It helps me get on task immediately the next morning rather than wonder what it was I was doing the previous afternoon. It also helps me leave the stress on the desk, ready to be picked up in the morning. I can forget it because it will be there, ready for me.

Are there any tricks or tips you use to lay your stress down? Please share them. We all need to drop our stress.

image credit: designthinking

 Posted by at 6:00 am

  4 Responses to “Stress!”

  1. I am enjoying your articles Dan. Thanks for writing them.
    -Luke

  2. Thank you for reading, Luke. So are you part of the group moving to Thanksgiving Point?

  3. One thing I’m terrible at doing, but invariably works when I do it is to identify the key stress point and then deal with it. Usually my worst stress comes from one or two specific things I’m avoiding and have hanging over me. If I can take the time to identify the problem, and then deal with it, I can usually rest easier. It’s the old Pareto Principle all over again. Chances are 20% of your problems are causing you 80% of your stress. Even just accomplishing one step toward banishing that particular bogeyman can drain off a lot of stress.

    But like I said, it’s still far easier said than done with me.

  4. That is a good point, Thom. Time to sit down and identify those stress points, formulate a couple tasks around relieving them and then Just Do It!

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