A HOLISTIC APPROACH FOR MANAGING STRESS
Stress Related Diseases
As per National Diabetes Statistics 2011, about 215000 people younger than 20 years had Diabetes in United States. Please note Diabetes is one such disease which is not limited to itself in terms of making harmful side effects (actually direct) to the body and is a major cause of heart disease and stroke and can also lead to kidney failure & blindness. Similarly statistics of cholesterol are also not very encouraging, Every 1 out of 5 Americans has cholesterol levels more than 200mg/dL. Similar stories are running across the world including the Asian Countries with rising economy and the culprit running this show is none other than the High Stress Levels in working professionals.
False Pursuit of Man
Stress is something which starts from a little worry and ends up in very serious psychosomatic disorders. It is very difficult to eliminate completely the source of such stress levels in a modern world where every body in the pursuit of high ambitions is running in a race to be ahead of the competition. The competitive dynamic world is not allowing us to pause and take time to think, introspect and analyse our false pursuit to success which is nothing but a fallacy. The ultimate aim of life can be described in two simple words- “PEACE” & “HAPPINESS” which should be under our own control and not dependent on factors outside. We work for these two words only, day in and day out and ultimately if we cannot achieve these two things only, then we should understand that we are fighting a wrong battle, which even if we win, will not be of any use as it will leave behind the aftermath of high stress levels, Sugar and cholesterol like issues.
It does not mean that all pursuits of man are false and he should become inactive to avoid stress as action is a must for every human being to prove his existence and to excel at all fronts of life. The only thing is that HAPPINESS should not be confused with PLEASURE. The latter is a temporary phenomenon whereas the former is the ultimate goal and is sustainable with the help of strong will power and the strong choice exercised by man.
4 Simple Ways for Stress Management
We always have a choice to be HAPPY without depending on the external stimuli, while PLEASURE totally depends on external stimuli, which means we always have a choice to avoid higher stress levels and to remain peaceful and calm in all adverse situations of life. With this fact in mind I was just trying to look into the ways to reduce or manage stress by an integrated and holistic approach to life. Below are some of those ways helpful in Stress Management:-
1. IDENTIFY YOUR PROBLEMS:-Firstly we should be able to diagnose the reasons of our worries. Most of the time we are worried because of multiple things, out of which many are too simple and can be easily resolved, but just because we do not know what is it actually for which we are worried and from where to start, we fail to manage them and invite stress as a result.. So Rule no 1 for Stress Management is to list down the pending and most urgent things on a piece of paper and then start writing down their solutions or action plan you will take to address them. Once this is done you are now free from at least 90% of those pending issues. Just make sure to add them in your organiser or planner so that they may not be left on the paper itself.
Write Down Your Activitites Of Concern
2. ADDRESS YOUR FEAR:- Now after listing down and getting rid of those 90% issue, time will come to address the more chronic issues which are real problems and generally are the actual source of stress. These will be those issues which we are afraid to address or we do not know what the solution is for them. In both the scenarios we fail to act because we are afraid of the outcome of our actions and are not very much sure whether we will be able to resolve the problem by taking these steps. In any case we know from the core of our heart that it is nothing but fear of failure which makes us reluctant to act on those 90% of the issues. We should try to address our issues and act on them fast because the early we act the quickly we will get rid of our fear & worries.
3. LAW OF KARMA (ACTION);-We must understand here that any problem of the world will be having two sides just like a coin – Either it has a solution Or it does not have a solution. If it has a solution then one need not worry and should immediately start acting to solve it. If the problem does not have any solution then also one need not worry as his worries will not solve it but only will make his appointment with disappointment. Here I remember a verse from Bhagvad Gita – one of the greatest guides to spiritual living in Hinduism from its Chapter 2 verse 47 stressing on Law of Karma (Action)-
“Thy right is to work only, but never to its fruits; let not the fruit-of-action be thy motive, nor thy attachment be to inaction”
By Lord Krishna!!!
This simply means since results of our actions are not in our control but the action to achieve the same is definitely in our hands, we should always act in the right direction to achieve our results but should not be attached to the results desperately. The source of all the pains in this world is our attachment with objects, people and results.
This is one of the most powerful holistic approaches to live a stress free life.
Bhagvad Gita - Greatest of the Guides for Spiritual Living
Some Great Books on Stress Management by Yoga
4. TIME MANAGEMENT:- Although we all know that it helps in addressing most of our worries, but just like a good pace bowler in cricket forgets very conveniently about basics of good line and length while delivering a fast ball as he concentrates more on his in swingers and out swingers about which he is famous for. In a similar fashion we also forget about two basic rule of time management at our work place- ie avoid procrastination & prioritise your work. More we postpone our ‘not so urgent’ work, the wider is our trap for future when all those ‘not so urgent things’ become suddenly nightmare dead lines. We shall prioritise things but shall ensure at the same time that things at the last of our priority list should be ultimately addressed.
Apart from the above there are certain yogic exercises including meditation from various branches of Yoga like Hatha Yoga, Ashtanga Yoga also called as Raja Yoga (Eight Fold Yoga) etc, which helps in dealing with mood swings a lot and ensure that apart from stress management we achieve fitness not only at physical level but also at emotional, intellectual and spiritual level.