Have you ever just talked to your parents and they say something that helps you calm your nerves and realize you need to stop stressing everything out? I have. This year my father’s words have really hit home. His go back to school words—okay, so I’m stressed about that and regretting it now but it will be worth it when I finish school—and just a few days ago when he said to stop worrying about tomorrow because tomorrow is not promised to anybody. He’s right. We all know that death can sneak up on us yet we function in the world as if we have centuries before we sleep forever.
While I know I might not wake up breathing every morning, or make it to and from the store, or anything else for that matter. I read about a woman who just barely survived after a plane crashed into her house. Had she not gone back to the back to get something she would have been dead. Life happens in a blink of an eye and can be gone just the same. I know all of this yet I have a tendency to stress days, weeks, months and even years ahead. I have nine more classes to go in school and I have nearly 18 months to go…provided I did my figures right. Of course 18 months is so far away yet I’m stressing things like, “how am I going to pay this back? What if I cannot get a job? What if the move doesn’t work out and I’m stuck in this no jobs outside of new fast food barely paying minimum wage work?” Yeah, those words are always in my mind, but my father made a good point when he told me to just get through each day and stop worrying about everything else.
I would be happier if I listened to him. I could breathe easier without the weight of the stress I feel. My mother and I were talking about this the other day because as I told her I hate going to this particular religious congregation with her because I am in constant defense mode when I go. It’s like I tell myself to just breathe before I go in but I step through the door and my defense mode goes up high and I’m in fight or flight the entire two hours. That’s not healthy physically or emotionally.
Stress can kill you; I know this. So while there are some things I cannot change at the moment I am working on not stressing myself out about everything. The future and things I cannot control do not deserve the right to control my mind, my body or my soul.
So if you’re always in fight or flight mode see if there is something you can cut out of your life. If you cannot cut it out then see if you can find a way to survive it. Deep breaths, remember inspirational quotes, or telling yourself “this too shall pass” while remembering that you are worth more than a life full of stress and pain. Find a way to survive it because if you don’t you might find that stress will kill every piece of you until it claims your soul.