If you go to Google and do a search on stress management you will find about 120 million results. That does not even include all the sub topic searches covering things like stress management tips, techniques, tests, exercises, activities, relaxation techniques, etc. Almost everything is focused on how to overcome the great evil called stress.
There is an idiom for "the solution for the problem is in the cause itself." As crazy as it might sound, this idiom provides all the enlightenment we need to create the avenue needed to eradicate stress from our daily lives. Of course we probably need to go pretty zen in our thinking to extract the true meaning of this idiom; so this isn't for the faint of heart. But, more on this phrase later...
Stress at a base level is part of the fight or flight mechanism that we have deep within our psyche. If you start doing your research on the problem of stress, it will not take very long to find some of the standard responses on how to overcome it:
- be grateful
- eat healthy
- distract yourself
- breathe right
- right posture
- get a massage
- spend time with happy people
All those solutions can be helpful in their own right and do have the benefit of relieving stress in your daily life. Unfortunately, they probably will not keep it from coming back. In fact, certain stress could even come back sooner if you follow one of the above stress solutions over actually combating stress in the right way.
Mark Twain has been quoted to say, "I have known a great many troubles, but most of them never happened." This is a good basis on why stress can return into your life -- because it is more a mental process than anything else. The mind is easily able to start to create all the possibilities that can happen in a situation and that noise brings on a higher level of agitation. Some, especially in spiritual circles, call it the "Monkey Mind." People leave the present moment and get caught up in the future scenarios that can happen. The mind just keeps all these thoughts running in your head distracting you from clarity on the present moment.
Whenever you want to solve something you need to come from a perspective of the law of cause and effect. Each effect or result out in life is directly related to a very specific cause. Remove the cause and the effect disappears. So, if you change your thinking style on how you look at stress you could actually completely eradicate it, as it is normally thought of, from your daily life.
Let us go back to the idiom quoted earlier - "the solution for the problem is in the cause itself." Now, by putting ourselves in the context of that idiom and the law of cause and effect we should be able to solve stress. The issue with stress management and stress continuing in a person's life in general is that a person focuses on and tries to manage that stress. The solution (e.g. stress management) for the problem (e.g. stress) is actually the cause of the problem. Now, that is pretty ground breaking when you look at the situation from that perspective. Can you feel the light bulb light up over your head?
Of course almost everyone will immediately reject my proposed solution because they do not agree on the cause of the problem. Most people see their job, money, relationships, etc. as the cause of their so called stress. Honestly, though, you are trying to manage the emotions you feel from those situations and that results in the stressful feeling you are having. So we are back at the same cause which is related to a person feeling they need to "manage" the situation.
The reality is we should never try to manage or control stress. Instead we should understand exactly what stress is meant to be for us. It is actually a fundamental component of life and is there as your friend to provide a resistance mechanism to something that is happening. Stress is the sign post to a growth opportunity. By adjusting your perception of the situation and learning to listen to life you can see the positive aspect of why you are experiencing the situation.
Basically what I am talking about is removing the victim mentality you hold around stress and taking back your power to be fully empowered when experiencing stress. Then, once you have fully reclaimed all your power around that situation, you will no longer experience stress at all in your life. The energy around that experience will not be a negative impactful experience but instead that of a positive growth energy.
So, here are the steps again to transmute stress into the positive:
- Stay present
- Do not let the Monkey Mind get the better of you
- Make sure you have adjusted your perspective on the stressful situation to that of the law of cause and effect
- Take full responsibility for being in this negative emotion, feeling, and situation
- See the stress as your friend and gain clarity around the real cause of the problem -- what is life trying to tell you in this moment to allow for your growth
- Think basics and keep the answer simple
- Remove the victim response and take your power back
- With the clarity gained, choose a different cause and receive the new effect
10% of life is actually based on what happens to us, while the remaining 90% is all about how we choose to respond. Really take some time and decide how you wish to respond to each and every event in your life. You are the one fully creating your life. By fully understanding and accepting that this event your are experience is there for the betterment of your life, you can actually not be hurt by it -- only helped. Everything always works out and is happening for a reason. Your job is to understand that reason and come to terms with it and choose the response you wish to experience. So how do you want to experience stress in your life? Combat it or embrace it?
On a side note, I wanted to mention one advanced technique you could do on understanding stress or even any emotion you are feeling. Of course, this requires you to have the ability to remain a watcher to your own life experience and not get caught up in the story. If you feel you are able to, then allow all that pent up energy inside you whether it is related to an emotion or just stress in general and let it come out of you in some verbal fashion. Express every part of it. During this stay fully present and don't become part of the story but just listen to it. This will allow you to understand the deeper part of what is happening and you should find the cause that you need to change even sooner.
Of course, as with anything, you should seek support where you can so that you do not have to overcome everything yourself. Watch out for a whole series of free content I will be providing around stress in the upcoming weeks. You can also reach out to me and ask a question so that I can create another post or schedule a free transformation strategy session with me for more help.