Stress may seem like it’s outside of us, but it’s really an internal response. What we perceive as stressful will be processed as “stress” in our brain. As a result, our mind freaks out, our body contracts and our perception narrows to survival mode.
Most people experience stress. We all know the inner grip of “having to make things happen.” It’s the pushing, the striving, accomplishing… it all keeps us in a high gear grind. Along with this is the feeling of being rushed. Racing against the clock we feel that time is limited. This feeling does not allow for presence. It’s just the opposite: living in opposition to the present moment. We are living somewhere else in our head that thinks, “I have to do this” instead of being fully where we are. We associate our sense of worth to our accomplishments and what we’re doing.
Where does all this past/future thinking and internal pressure come from?
Whenever you feel rushed, pressured or stressed, it is you pressuring yourself. While we may want to blame our external environment, it is really the stress response within that we are responding to.
That’s good news.
Because you are empowered to shift the stress you experience. You aren’t just a victim of stress. You can stop, take a moment, and choose to shift how you experience your life events.
So what can you do to shift stress?
I recommend this:
Imagine that you are on vacation.
You know what it’s like to be on vacation. You take it easy. You’re open. You go with the flow..
Nothing is too serious, or heavy. You have time, and time to take your time.
You have time to relax.
When you’re on vacation, life feels spacious.
So see if you can invite the “experience” of vacation into your everyday life.
You can start by saying, “what would I do if I were on vacation?”
“What would it feel like to be on vacation?”
This is not a pretend, Polly-Anna way of living. It is not about evading responsibility, but being able to release the inner-grip you experience in life. It is a reference point for living life in a relaxed way. It’s about making a conscious choice over an unconscious habitual response.
As Stephen Paul says, “Everything you do can be done better from a place of relaxation.”
Don’t wait to take a vacation to relax.
Invite “vacation mode” into your life.
See how it works, and let me know how it goes!