Emails, Stress Management and a Glass of Water


It should be a 4-letter word.  We all have it in our lives.

Some more prominent than others, but this is truly one of those “relative” things.  No, I do not mean “In-Laws” or Uncles or siblings…

I feel a lot of stress in my job.  But so does Diana.  And the kid bagging my groceries.  The nurses.  Pastors.  Mail carriers.

We all have it…and “it” is wearing a different face for each of us.

How we deal with it is just as different as the type of stress we each have.

I got an email from a dear friend not too long ago…you know one of those “forwards” that seem to fill our inboxes.  (yes, I am guilty of sending those on also, but I try to limit and control my urges)  This is someone that I always take the time to read whatever she sends me. (not that I don’t read what YOU just sent me)  It isn’t that everything she sends is worth reading, but most of it is.  I also like the fact that many things she “forwards” to me have a message…and it is usually uncannily very appropriate for the moment I can get “stuck in”.

This one addressed the topic of Stress.  It also did it from the perspective of a lecturer.  So since I have been in a similar position in the past, it struck me…and stayed.  So I though I would share it…slightly paraphrased, of course.

While addressing an audience, explaining stress management, a lecturer raised a glass of water and asked the audience “How heavy is this glass filled with water?”  Answers were called out and ranged from 20g to 500g.

The lecturer continued saying, “The absolute weight doesn’t really matter.  It depends on how long I hold onto it.  Hold it for a minute, no big deal.  For an hour and my arm will get tired and perhaps sore.  If I hold for a day…well I may need to go to the hospital.  In each case, it is the same weight, but the longer I hold it, the heavier it becomes.” 

“And it is different for each of us.”

The lecturer continued, “It is the same way with Stress Management.  If we carry our burdens all the time, sooner or later, the burden becomes too heavy, almost to the point of incapacitating us.  We can not go on.”

“Just like the glass of water, you need to put it (your burden) down for a while and rest before holding it again.  Refreshed, we can carry it if needed or deal with it much better.”

Easy, uh?  No, I know it isn’t.  Because I try to do it all of the time.  I carry them too long.  And then I try to put them down for a spell…try being the “operative” word.  Sometimes it takes me a little longer to put them down.  But eventually I can set them aside…knowing that they can not be ignored.

Sometimes we need help doing this.  Again, this is a very personal issue, just like managing the stress.  We all have our own ways of doing what works best for ourselves.

Humor.  Prayer.  Meditation.  Reading.  Physical activity.  Imaging.  Music.  Travel.  A Vacation Day.

Here are a few quips I found.  Just remind yourself sometime of these and even if they make you smile, it was a good thing…we can all use a smile:

  • Just accept that some days you are the statue and some days you are the pigeon.
  • Keep your words soft and sweet, in case you need to eat them
  • Nobody cares if you can’t dance well, just dance
  • The second mouse is the one who gets the cheese
  • Your sole purpose in life may be to simply be kind to others
  • If you are “detoured” along your journey, enjoy the scenery

Somehow it doesn’t seem right to add a cocktail recipe after talking about stress management.  So I think I will save it for later.

In the meantime, put anything down that may be a burden to you right now.  You need the rest.  Once rested, carry on with your task.  But find what works best for you.

Me.  I found long ago that prayer works best.  I can use other things too, but prayer seems to help me.  The hardest part is “Letting go and Letting God” take care of things.  Guess I am stubborn…Or slow…Or (fill in the blank)

So set “it” aside and enjoy your life.  Enjoy your family, your friends, your loved ones.  It is a beautiful time of the year…enjoy it too!

I will, as soon as I set this damn glass of water down…

Published in: on October 6, 2011 at 10:48 am  Comments (3)  
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3 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. You are witty and wise and wonderfully authentic. I like that combination quite a lot. I intend to do a short jig in your honor on the way to the water pitcher!


    • Good to see you are dancing! I do my best when no one is watching. Thanks, I am blushing…


  2. This is very interesting, You are a very skilled blogger.
    I have joined your rss feed and look forward to in the hunt
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