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Stress doesn’t have to interfere in a person’s daily life

December 28, 2008
By SANDY MICKELSON, Messenger staff writer

Many times people ask where I find stuff to write about, and my answer always has been, "there's never a lack of anything to write."

Perhaps I should have listened more closely to my answer.

It may be the cold. It may be an empty feeling. It may be laziness. Whatever it is, I haven't been listening, I guess, because I don't have anything to write about.

Like good, old Sgt. Schultz, I know nothing.

I know Christmas is just 11 hours away as I write this, and as you read it, New Year's Eve is just three nights off.

I know the sunlight is gleaming off the courthouse stone, which is beautiful even if it hurts my eyes.

I know it took me five tries to drive up our driveway and into the garage Tuesday night. I goosed it a little on the last try and just as I wondered what would happen if my tires hit dry concrete my tires hit dry concrete and I shot to the front of the garage like somebody smacked me in the rear of my car.

That's when it's nice to be home.

When my hands quit shaking, I tried to check the e-mail I've been ignoring for days. Ignored only because the stupid computer works only if I start it, then restart and restart again. By that time the noxious little chipmunk that runs the innards figures he might as well allow me in and stop the building stress.

That's when I found something about stress management, which seemed only right.

It seems:

A lecturer explaining stress management to an audience raised a glass of water and asked, "How heavy is this glass of water?" Answers called out ranged from 20g to 500g.

The lecturer replied, "The absolute weight doesn't matter. It depends on how long you try to hold it. If I hold it for a minute, that's not a problem. If I hold it for an hour, I'll have an ache in my right arm. If I hold it for a day, you'll have to call an ambulance. In each case, it's the same weight, but the longer I hold it, the heavier it becomes."

He continued, "And that's the way it is with stress management. If we carry our burdens all the time, sooner or later, as the burden becomes increasingly heavy,we won't be able to carry on.

"As with the glass of water, you have to put it down for a while and rest before holding it again. When we're refreshed, we can carry on with the burden.

"So, put down your burden. Don't carry it home. You can pick it up tomorrow. Whatever burdens you're carrying now, let them down for a moment if you can."

So long friends, until the next time when we're together.

Contact Sandy Mickelson at (515) 573-2141 or



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