Have you ever had that nagging worry over something you did or didn’t say or do? What about the sense of dread that makes you sure you’re going to be overwhelmed by something you’re powerless to handle. Or my personal favorite, the anxiety that starts in the morning before my day even begins?
You know what I’m talking about. It’s STRESS and it affects everyone. The best we can do is simply learn to manage it.
A LITTLE BIT ABOUT STRESS
There are actually two types of stress, the POSITIVE type that gives us a sense of excitement or motivation to give a good speech, run the fastest race or to think quickly on our feet. This type of stress can actually improve our overall performance.
The second type however is not quite so helpful. In fact, almost all forms of physical sickness and health conditions such as heart disease, tummy upset, asthma attacks, arthritis, epilepsy, headaches, bowel problems and skin rashes can be traced back to this type.
Interestingly, various internal as well as external causes and triggers produce stress within us.
WHERE DOES STRESS COME FROM?
Originally stress was a defense mechanism that created a “fight or flight” response in cavemen that enabled them to survive should they need to flee from a dinosaur or attack from another tribe.
Fortunately, we don’t need to run from dinosaurs anymore, but the stress reaction remains in our modern times due to a mental re-creation of perceived danger in our minds. In other words, FEAR.
Interestingly, A Course in Miracles says, ‘although we would like to be relaxed and happy all the time, we are constantly CHOOSING between our only two emotions which are fear and love and we are ever swinging back and forth between the two.’
LEARN TO FORGIVE YOUR STRESS
However, because fear is only a mental re-creation of perceived danger, we are spending half our time in a made up ILLUSION of stress. Fortunately the Course also tells us, this need not be. Through the process of forgiveness, where we are encouraged to overlook and LET-GO of our fear and grievances, we can produce a mental environment of peace and love that effectively replaces these illusions (fears).
The fearful spell of perceived pain and suffering is then broken and we’re free to be ourselves once more. The dynamic is simple. Because fear and love cannot co-exist in the same place in our minds at the same time, we can only experience one emotion or the other at any given time.
In other words, when we choose fear, we can’t experience love, but when we choose love, there’s simply no room for fear. The key is to consistently practice choosing LOVE, or at least be WILLING to consistently choose love.
Overall, since fear, love and choice are all ideas that take place in our mind, our tools and resources must take place there as well.
Therefore, I’ve included a few “miracles” affirmations to help make the choice for love easier. You can say them to yourself whenever you need to ditch the stress and get back into your happy place.
- I will forgive and this (stress, fear, guilt, anxiety) will disappear.
- I can choose to see this (situation, person, judgment) differently.
- I am never upset for the reason I think (help me see this upset, guilt, judgment differently).
- I choose love over fear (I can only be in one or the other at the same time).
- I place my future in the Hands of God (great for anxiety relief).
- I need do nothing.
By using this process and these affirmations, along with remembering the BREATHE, you will have in essence devised an effective stress management system that will ensure you pave the way for greater health and happiness each and every day!