Stress is the tension and pressure caused by expectations in life.
We stress because we worry about deadlines.
We stress because we fret about solutions.
We stress because we are unsure of the outcome of our words and actions.
We stress because we can not control every aspect in our life, and we stress because we doubt our authority regarding the aspects we can control.
Stress is the product of expectation, worry, and doubt.
In order to deal with stress, we must understand why we are creating it.
When we project expectations onto a situation, we are taken out of the moment.
We worry and anticipate what is to come instead of focusing on what we can experience and interact with in the present moment.
We fail to see opportunities for action, inaction, and insight because we are too preoccupied with what we should be doing or what we situations we should be producing.
Imagine someone in possession of a lit fire on a cold winter night.
If they are too busy anticipating and building up defenses for possible situations where their fire may be blown out, then they never get to enjoy and benefit from that fire.
If they are too attached to the idea of keeping their fire aflame, then they will not be able to handle the reality that their firewood may eventually run out.
Both situations cause stress.
The reality is the fire will go out at a certain point.
In order to fully enjoy that fire, one must find a balance between action and inaction.
One must cultivate enough resources to keep that fire going, but one can not spend all of their time cultivating that resource. One must also enjoy the fire.
That fire is akin to a situation. A situation can either progress or regress.
There will always be a time for that fire to be extinguished- one can not fan the same flame for forever.
Once one stops expecting that fire to stay lit, then one can enjoy the fire.
But one can not expect the fire to stay lit without their action-
one must also take responsibility for the factors they have power over.
If one really wants that fire to stay lit because one enjoys that particular flame,
one will do everything in their power to make it happen.
Usually, if that desire is genuine, then one will find a sense of enjoyment and peace from actively fulfilling their responsibilities and exerting that power regarding that situation.
When one is lacking that genuine will and desire, one experience immense feelings of stress.
Do You Want It?
Do you want that particular fire? Or are you fanning that fire because you have placed expectations onto yourself?
Is this fire important to you? Do you need it, or do you just think you need it?
Do you want that fire to be bright because that brightness resonates with you? Or do you go after a certain brightness because you are comparing your fire to others'?
When we compare our situations to others, and when we go after certain situations because of others, we inevitable create stress. We are placing others' opinions and values before ours.
How can you expect to feel fulfilled if you are simply borrowing others' priorities?
Once you find your own true priorities, you can work towards going after the realities you want to create.
How Bad Do You Want It?
Sometimes when we go after what we want, we get so attached to a certain path and certain outcome that we create more stress even when dealing with what we are truly passionate about.
This stress is often caused by a narrow idea of what we truly want.
If a fisherman wants to make a catch, he will not choose a puddle over the sea.
Exercise open-mindedness. The vast amounts of possibilities will allow you to be flexible. The more flexible you are and the more easily you can adjust to situations, the less stressful you will feel.
You Are Not The Goal
Sometimes we attach our own personal worth to the extent which we can fulfill certain goals.
Know that you are not the goal, you are not the progress, nor are you the regression, the failure, nor the stagnation.
Remember that you choose to nurture a situation because you want to experience it, not define yourself through it.
Situations always end, but you will always have to deal with yourself.
The less you allow the parameters of a situation to dictate your emotions and self esteem, the more space you create in order to be flexible and open minded.
Remember to be open minded and present in the moment.
Let yourself be happy, and let yourself reject and accept what truly resonates with you. Do not chase what you do not care to catch. Be honest with yourself, and try to fully enjoy what the fleeting moments offer you.