Stress management is one of the top concerns people come to see me for. I often share this story about one of the main reasons causing stress and the simple beginning towards relief – remembering to put things down.
Here goes the story:
Once, a professor began his class by holding up a glass with some water in it. He held it up for all to see and asked the students, ‘How much do you think this glass weighs?’ ‘1 pound!’ ….’2 pounds!’ …..’3 pounds!’ ……the students answered.
‘I really don’t know unless I weigh it,’ said the professor, ‘but, my question is: What would happen if I held it up like this for a few minutes?’ ‘Nothing’ the students said.
‘OK what would happen if I held it up like this for an hour?’ the professor asked. ‘Your arm would begin to ache’ said one of the students.
‘You’re right, now what would happen if I held it for a day?’ ‘Your arm could go numb, you might have severe muscle stress & paralysis; have to go to hospital for sure’ ventured another student. All the students laughed.
‘Very good. But during all this, did the weight of the glass change?’ Asked the professor.
‘No’.. Was the answer.
“Then what caused the arm ache & the muscle stress?”
The students were puzzled.
“What should I do now to come out of pain?” asked professor again.
“Put the glass down!” said one of the students “Exactly!” said the professor.
Life’s problems are something like this.
Hold it for a few minutes in your head & they seem OK.
Think of them for a long time & they begin to ache.
Hold it even longer & they begin to paralyze you.
It is important to think of the challenges in your life, but EVEN MORE IMPORTANT to ‘put them down’ at the end of every day before you go to sleep. That way, you are not stressed, you wake up every day fresh, strong, can handle any issue, any challenge that comes your way!
Remember friends – PUT THE GLASS DOWN TODAY!
In life, many of us hold on to just so many of things.. we hold on to insults, grudges, traumas, fights, criticisms and what not. While it is necessary to think things through and have a problem solving approach, is it really necessary to keep it alive and kicking all the time by consistently focusing on it? Is it
helpful to hold on to all your pain? Taking your attention and your energy off your problems can be immensely therapeutic. While it helps you de-stress and relax your tired frantic mind, the process of incubation can also lead to significant new insights actually enabling you to solve the problem in a better way than before.
So while you will inadvertently hold and be held in conflicts and problems every now and then, what’s more important is that you remember to PUT THEM DOWN. Holding on will not help. It will make you tired, irritable, anxious and ineffective. Can u really do anything about the glass or the water in it as long as you’re holding it, just holding it? Instead try putting it down, just for today and see the difference it makes in your ability to do something about it the next day.. Give yourself a time-out for today, and check if the world falls apart or things go really wrong without your constant worry.. Maybe it’s safe to put things down, maybe it’s okay.. Meditation and being mindful are the simplest most practical ways of putting things down, atleast for those few minutes.. Try it today. Let go of all that is unnecessary.. Wishing you a new Light life..
For more ways to manage stress and live a happier easier life, please read the earlier blogs:
1. 6 ways to make everyday life easier here: https://m.facebook.com/
2. Try EFT, read about it here: https://www.sacac.sg/blogb/
*Story shared from http://www.motivation-for-
Written by: Mahima Gupta Clinical Psychologist SACAC Counselling