I was in a Facebook conversation with a friend about the stress she was under. Her husband had helpfully suggested that perhaps she should “just not feel it.” Sensing that this was probably not the best advice he’d given her in their marriage, she was crowd sourcing ideas about how to deal with the emotional pressure she was feeling.
That led me to think about my own experience with stress. Stress, as a word, is just too vague to do anything about. Most of us think of stress as mental or emotional pressure. But how do you do anything about pressure? You can’t unless you’re thinking clearly about where the pressure is coming from.
Any solution for stress that tries to reduce the level of stress in general is a short-term bandaid. Somebody gets a massage, someone else goes to a emotional worship service, someone else gets drunk to forget their problems. All of these make the stress feel less present for a while, but none of them address the causes. So, how can you really reduce your stress?