Ah, stress ... a riff on one of our forever companions (Principle 28: CRITICAL MASS)

I can't help but giggle when I encounter a person who claims to be free of stress. Stress is as natural and constant as gravity: it simply is. We've got "good stress" (eustress) and "bad stress" (distress); the middle ground between these extremes is simply stress. I've come to understand this, and in doing so, I am taking stress off my "things to worry about" list. Stress is simply one of the I Ching's 64 universal principles ... one of the Changes that is always working through and with us. How do we work through and with the principle of Stress?

Recognizing stress as one of Life's inevitables lessens its load on us ... I think, It's a given ... I've got to stop fighting it. To think, What's the use? is apt here; to give up this fight is an act of moderating our power into another, wiser use.

"What's the use?" ... I reframe the phrase, think about it differently.

What's the use ... of stress?

What's the use ... I'm not giving up here; I'm giving up this particular mistaken belief that all stress is always bad.

How to use stress? If it's a given, it's always present ... a force that acts on and through us. What can we do differently in relation to the fact of stress?

Humour is always an option:

You're on the phone with your wife and you're saying, "I'm just so disoriented," and she says, "That's because you're not going anywhere; you're just going."

~ Barry Lopez, in an interview ~

Think: hamster on a wheel; frog in a blender; driving pedal to the metal with the emergency brake on. Then see these pictures in your head as a cartoonist would ... and you're smiling, aren't you?

In the first year after my mother died, I often answered people's stock enquiry, How are you??, with "I feel like a frog in a blender, and the sucker's turned on to WHIP!" One of my friends laughed so hard at this that she nearly choked on the joke. She'd never heard the phrase before.

My beloved friend R often answers my How are yous with Hon -- It's too MUCH!! We double over and laugh ourselves witless.

As the sage said,

Sometimes there is nothing to do but have a good laugh!

Illustration credits: "aaah" by the comic-wizards at http://espressoanimation.com/; "Frog in a blender" by vikki-sixxx, via http://deviantart.com/.


Renee said…
What a great post Jaliya. I had never heard that expression too. I am pretty sure many people probably haven't heard it. har har

Okay, I have to admit, I stuck out my hand and rubbed the buddha's belly for luck.

Love you.

Renee xoxo
Jaliya said…
Renee ... I first heard "frog in a blender" when I was talking on the phone with a friend, shortly after my mother died. My friend asked me how I was doing; I was in that incoherent place of no words, so my friend suggested, "Maybe you feel like a frog in a blender...?" -- I burst out laughing ... I was instantly reminded of Dan Ackroyd's "Bass-O-Matic" skit on SNL years ago ... GROSS! :-D

I've got a big, beautiful Buddha in my living room ... I'll rub his belly for you too :-)

Karin Bartimole said…
such a great take on stress jaliya - yes, it simply is. you've introduce me to a new word with "eustress" - I love new words :)
The frog in the blender is something I've heard before, and I just can't get to the funny in it, because my very graphic brain goes all literal and I see crushed bone, guts - well, you get my meaning! I guess that in itself is pretty funny, but now I want to avoid my blender!!
love your wisdom sharing as always, and love you,
Curio said…
Nice writing. Real nice. And entertaining to boot!
Renee said…
Hello dear friend:

Yesterday poured all day, today off and on.

It has been cool where you could even wear a jacket.

Then when it gets too hot I'm running in the house to get out of the heat.

Mind you we have so many mosquitoes I wish they would spray already.

Love Renee xoxo
Jan said…
Laughing definitely helps. So does reading your posts.
Jaliya said…
Love and blessings all 'round xoxo

I can't seem to stay awake for the last several days, so I'm slow to respond (hah! -- "slow" is my modus operandi these days, and I like it just fine!) ...

Curio -- nice to make your acquaintance :-) I've had a boo at your blog and one of these days I'm going to set about three hours aside to peruse at my leisure! Your thinking so jives with mine ...

Bless xoxoxoxox
Mariana Soffer said…
A good laugh helps you change your focus of attention, therefore you have to let go the bad stress that you are grabbing so strong your hands are going to bleed if you do not stop soon. Also Adrenalin situations can release stress, as paradoxically as this might sound.
bye bye

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