I received the following story from a friend, Sharon:
A young lady walked confidently around the room while leading & explaining stress management to an audience with a raised glass of water. 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 8oz to 20oz.
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 & 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.”
The Weight Of Stress
Try this for me, please . . .
Make a fist and at the same time, keep an eye on a watch. Hold that fist for one minute straight without letting up. Keep it tight as you possibly can. After one minute, straighten out your hand. Easy? Difficult? Don’t you feel weaker than before you did this little exercise?
The Toll Of Stress
There are those walking among us who are under an unbearable amount of stress. Needing to pay bills and not having enough money. Worry about an evaluation. Wondering if a son or daughter is doing okay. Worrying about where the next meal will come from, or worse, if there will be a next meal. Worrying about the upcoming test or quiz, the assignment that was due and is not complete. The boy (or girl) friend that doesn’t seem interested.
Stress knows no boundaries. Stress isn’t concerned about gender or religion or race. Stress doesn’t care about poverty or wealth, talents, looks or dress. Stress doesn’t care where one was born or where one lives. Stress laughs in the face of status and title. Stress ignores how much stress one is under and doesn’t know if too much is too much.
Ignorant that way. Selfish that way. Uncaring and unconcerned that way.
The Weight And Toll Of Stress
We’ve heard the old adage, “Walk A Mile In Someone Else’s Shoes . . .”
To be honest, there are some shoes I wouldn’t ever want to walk in. I look at the folks wearing them, walking in them and I hurt for them. I can guess at their pain.
Yet . . .
I know absolutely nothing of what they might truly be feeling and experiencing. So truly, really, how can I walk in their shoes when their experience and pain and suffering . . . their stress . . . is their own unique experience?
Perhaps, then, it might be best in some cases . . . some times . . . maybe most of the time . . . to sit beside them, to walk along with them, to lend them a hand and help them up. For them to lean on. Sometimes it is enough . . . more than enough, really . . . to remain silent and be with them. Something to think about . . .