Tuesday, October 14, 2014
My Day In A Nutshell - Ways To Manage Stress
My life is extremely stressful. More stressful than most although still less stressful than for some people whose lives are plagued with extreme situations. I am continually grateful that I don't fall into that category. The problem is that most of the stress I deal with now is completely out of my control and I am extremely reliant on others in many ways and the future for me is one gigantic question mark. This is a huge time of transition for me, but it is a necessary transition and every day I spend at least 16 hours or more fighting to carve out what it will look like.
So anyway... the stress...
The problem is that my body can no longer handle stress. Most of the time we are told that some life stress like the type that would be experienced at work or in a competitive situation is good for us. The affects stress has on me though unfortunately mimics in many ways the same affects lengthy terminal illnesses have on others and no one so far seems to know why. My body is breaking down and the symptoms have this domino effect that compile and continually worsen and it is this downward spiral that will have an unhappy ending if I don't turn it around. I have had multiple doctors who had no interaction with each other tell me (some might say warn me is a better way to say it) that I have got to reduce the amount of stress I am under even though I never even discussed stress or my emotional status with them. One completed exploratory surgery on me and had something to say about it after based on what she saw internally. Another actually went as far as to "prescribe" it to me writing it down on her pad and underlining it over and over and over again. To complicate things I suffer from food allergies and medicinal allergies, but the truth is that it is one of those "which came first the chicken or the egg" types of situations.
I made a huge and frightening decision a handful of years ago based on how bad my health had gotten that I believe saved me, but at the same time was the catalyst for the uncertainty that my life is in today. I spend a lot of time now just praying that the support I need will continue to come and that the obstacles I deal with are sorting themselves out with time and I just keep relying on my creativity and my intelligence and try to have faith in myself that I will come up with the right formula that will help it all work out.
In the meantime I am at the mercy of others and I spend most of my nighttime hours trying to manage the stress and anxiety that comes along with being in that type of a situation.
I'm writing about this today because I know that there has to be at least one other person on the planet whose situation is like mine and I believe very strongly that most of the time the things that we do have the power to reach someone right at the exact moment when they need it the most. I also believe that you should try and help others through whatever medium you have at your disposal. There are a lot of ways that I wish I could help others but just don't have the means to do right now, but what I do have is the ability to write and share myself and my story and my truth and while I'm not the best writer on the planet I'm at least equipped with enough creativity and currently the electronic means and medium with which to reach out a hand in my own way.
So the positives are that even though I live with an extreme fear of not knowing what will happen to me tomorrow in more ways than one and I don't have a sense of security in any way I have a peacefulness in my soul that I didn't have before I took the leap. I also have time to do the research that I need to in order to solve the medical problems for myself and maybe others that the medical industry doesn't yet know how to fix. Even though it still progresses I have slowed the downward spiral that was my health dramatically and have learned so much and have faith that I will be able to figure it all out. I also have an amazing relationship with my niece that I would not have had at all if I had stayed on the path I was on. I would have only been able to see her every other week for an hour or two and I am thankful every day that I had the courage to make a change that allowed us to have time together (and have time with my family in general.) I have also been able to help my family in other small ways by being available in last minute situations and to do things like be at a certain place at a certain time to manage things like deliveries and construction and keeping trespassers at bay and other situations that seem small but didn't really have a solution without me. We can't get so caught up in the fear and the bad things that we don't see the good and we can't forget that sometimes things happen for a reason.
So how do I try to manage the stress and anxiety that I still do have?
Well, I talk about and share the different ways here often through my stories and links that I post so others can gain from the things I find helpful. I turn to my spirituality. I meditate. I do things to distract myself like read or watch a program. I do research. I write. I journal. I use my creativity. I focus on work. I work on changing the things I CAN control. I use music. I exercise. I learn. I rely heavily on faith. I try to attract positive energy into my life through the principles of the Law of Attraction. I pray. Sometimes I just submit to what I'm feeling and let it out through tears or anger and just allow myself to admit what is so that I can avoid paralysis and can take action when I come out the other side. Sometimes I search for others who have overcome their own obstacles for inspiration. Sometimes I spend time just visualizing my dream. I spend a lot of time searching for mentors that I can learn from because we don't always have people around us who have the ability to teach us the skills we need for success. I also try to share and help others in as many ways as I am able. I work and I work and I work.
I often wonder how other people are doing? I mean how are they REALLY doing? What issues are they having behind their perfect Facebook smiles? How do they manage the obstacles they have encountered? Could you imagine if we all were just honest about our life journeys and shared what worked and what didn't? How would life for everyone improve if we all left our pride and our egos aside and just admitted to our vulnerabilities and our strengths and reached out to the world with these truths?
I might have to take some deep breaths throughout the remainder of my day to hold onto calm, but I have peace in my soul just from sharing and knowing that what I wrote today will help someone somewhere sometime even if only in some small way.
How do you manage life struggles? Share your truth and help someone else along the way.