How To Feel Less Stressed

A million things running through your mind. A million things you need to do. When you feel life is too much to handle, you stress.

When you stress, you worry about everything that’ll go wrong. Fret over how things might not get done in time. Feel over-worked.

The past three months have been rough for me. Juggling a full time office job and being a writer and a blogger hasn’t been easy: clueless as to why I’m doing the job I’m doing, emails waiting to be answered in my inbox, unhappy with articles I’m working on as deadlines loom, five hours of sleep at most each night. Being sick with the winter flu hasn’t helped either.

It takes patience to be less stressed. Take a step back from what’s driving you up the wall and do something else. Or don’t do too much for a moment. At one point, I was writing for my blog, for publications and for my own writing book every night after work in a space of a crammed, tired few hours. It was a struggle to put my feelings into words, let alone stories. One night I decided to play video games for half an hour and the words flowed better after that – all calmed down.

It takes courage to admit you’re stressed, and even more courage to do something about it. You get worked up maybe because you have the wrong approach to things; maybe you should do things differently. I usually finish each blog post in a couple of days but last month it was impossible as I wasn’t inspired to do so. As much as it was scary to go off schedule, I did manage to finish each post over a few days. Slowly.

Things don’t always go your way. Letting go of upsetting things you can’t change gives you the strength to move on when you’re stressed. A couple of weeks ago, I found out a publication rejected my article after I spent days redrafting it. This wasn’t nice to hear, but I reminded myself so be it: I don’t write to get published.

Stress isn’t always bad. A lot of the time, stressing over something means we want to get things done. And sometimes you get it done and learn what you’re capable of.

Forcing myself to stay up and write at night over these past frustrating few months, I’ve written more than I’ve ever had, experimenting and getting comfortable with a more casual writing style. Never knew my blog would still be going. I think I have it in me to write a book.

I stressed as a kid, and maybe this has rubbed off on my adult self. When I was high school, my Chinese-Malaysian parents rubbished the idea of stress. “Stress? No such thing. Keep doing problems in your maths book” was what my mum said to me each time I mentioned I felt stressed – headaches, fatigue – studying for exams. Seeing my bleary-eyed Asian classmates were always studying, I believed my mum and opened the textbooks again.

Being Asian, it’s hard not to stress. There’s pressure for many of us in Asia to work round the clock to finish that project at work. Pressure to believe in superstition. Coming first in class. Getting married. Stress, an unspoken part of Asian cultures.

When you stress, you want everything to fall into place. Sometimes we’re our worst critics, working hard to be perfect at everything because that’s what we expect of ourselves. But who can be perfect? We can only be perfect versions of our imperfect selves.

Reading this post I’ve written, I’m not too happy with it. It sounds clunky. Too boring. Too long. Perhaps I’m being ridiculous.

When you’re stressed, something’s got to give. Sometimes, that something is something – or someone – you love. Maybe it’s time I stopped writing for a bit.

When do you feel stressed? How do you relax?

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92 thoughts on “How To Feel Less Stressed

  1. Mabel I think you are learning a great deal about life. often it takes a bit of a crash to see it. I spent a to of decades being more stressed than \I needed to. I often use meditation and exercise to relive my stress. I also think humor and doing fun things is very helpful. Sending you a hug across the planet. 🙂

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    • Life, what’s that? Life is simple, and life is complex. I reckon we learn the most when we go through our most challenging times, or when we find ourselves in an uncomfortable place. Humour. You must love laughing a lot, Sue. I hope laughter is a never-fail medicine to any stress you may feel, sounds like it. I can even see you laughing climbing up rocks and mountains 😉 Sending you a hug your way back. Thanks for dropping by and for the support, as always. It means a lot.

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  2. Thsi blog post doesn’t sound boring at all. It is, of course, sensible especially this statement: “It takes courage to admit you’re stressed, and even more courage to do something about it.” The latter turned out to be what you asked at the end.

    So I say when I feel stressed, I take a break for 10-15 (sometimes 20) by staying near this cluster of plants located at our office’s reception area. I’ve always been attached to nature and that’s it. I just stay there and look at the green plants. The mere visual exposure to them produce a calming effect that makes me recover from stress within just a few minutes.

    If we’re talking about a rough week, I also take a what I call nature break by going to place that has a lot of trees or grasses and breath. Needless to say the effect is also therapeutic.

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    • Good to hear you’ve found a way to de-stress and relax when the time arises. I hope those are real plants that your office has. The colour green also has a calming and relaxing effect on the eyes. Many also have said that looking at greenery is a good way to give your eyes a “vision break”, especially from looking at the computer for long periods of time. You sitting there by yourself and looking at the plants – nothing wrong with that but maybe your busy colleagues might find that strange 😀

      Thanks for the nice words, Sony. Actually, I didn’t realise admitting to the idea of not writing for a while was a bit of a bold decision. To be honest, the thought of stopping writing and blogging scares me as this is what makes me happy.

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  3. Thanks for writing this. I tend to get overwhelmed myself, juggling work with writing and other personal projects. Why oh why must work interrupt everything else I want to do with my life?!?

    I’m impressed you work as hard as you do on this blog. Do you think it was good how you were raised, taught you how to be strong etc., or unfair that you didn’t get to relax and were always pushed? There’s probably good and bad in it, but you must lean one way or the other.

    I do certainly think you have the discipline to write a successful book!

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    • Overwhelmed. I am glad you used that word. Sums up what being stressed is about. You’re right. A lot of the time work gets in the way of life and what we really want to do. And as someone said to me earlier this year, “sometimes life gets in the way”.

      Thanks, Ray. If I didn’t have the strict, work-work-and-work upbringing I had, I probably wouldn’t have written most of the stories on this blog and elsewhere. Coming from a typical Asian family, I feel like I didn’t have much room to be creative and be who I am up until recently. But better late than never. I don’t want to write a book because I like and am in awe of the idea of writing a book. Rather, I want to write a book because I feel like I’m meant to do it and I genuinely want to share my thoughts. I think that’s why you wrote your book.

      On a random note, I followed your Twitter. Can you chuck me back a follow? I love followers there.

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      • Oh of course, thanks for following me! I usually reciprocate on Twitter, don’t know how you fell through the cracks. On it.

        Anyway, keep living the creative life best you can 🙂

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        • Ah, you’re forgiven. I find your tweets quite amusing, that’s why the follow. I have two accounts, each for different reasons, so it gets confusing for some people. Oh well.

          Thanks, Ray. The creative writing life is stressful in itself on many levels, but I don’t mind it one bit 🙂

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  4. Hi, It sounds like you’ve had a hard job these last few months but I think you’ve got it in you to write a book! Dont give up but it’s important not to push yourself too much either especially if you’ve been Ill. I definitely agree that a lot of people don’t believe in and can’t accept stress as a genuine thing when I have experience of it making me Ill in the past, literally paralysing me in bed. What helps comfort me is reading passages in my bible or maybe taking some time out to iron or paint my nails in front of the TV because this way I’m switching off from work and turning my attention on something different. Doinf art or playing my flute is also a massive help for this reason or taking a quick shower, walk around the block to revitalise your senses or a power nap with a strong cup of tea afterwards can also work wonders. Great post 🙂

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    • Hello Jody! Always good hearing from you. You’re right. There are different types of stress. We can stress over things happening around us. We stress physically because of, say, pushing ourselves too hard at a sport. Or we can stress mentally and sometimes that leads to anxiety and depression.

      Distractions is always a big help to de-stress and I’m glad you’ve found ways to do that. Like painting your nails in your case – that sounds like such a simple thing, but if it makes you happier and more calm, why not? It’s a mini-way of treating yourself, taking care of and putting yourself first. “Don’t give up”. You said it right. If all else false, maybe we should just laugh at stress in the face. Literally. After all, laughter is the best medicine 😀

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  5. Hi Mabel, I read every word of your post so it’s never too long and not at all boring. Stress, stress and more stress. They come, they go. As long as we are aware and in control, a little stress sometimes get us out of the norm. As you said ‘Letting go of upsetting things you can’t change gives you the strength to move on when you’re stressed’. Go and play your computer games and let the stress go. Take a break, sleep in, do nothing and allow your body to rejuvenate and come back with new energy, to blog or open up a new page to start writing your book. 🙂 How do I relax? Last night, I started watching Korean Drama Series again …. used to do that lots before I found WordPress. 🙂

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    • “a little stress sometimes get us out of the norm.” I really like how you said that, Jess. Stress makes us act in the craziest ways sometimes, bringing out our weird sides. Sometimes when I’m stressed, I find myself checking and re-checking, even triple-checking things: like whether if I have my keys, if I have my phone in my bag….maybe I’m a bit OCD.

      Last night, I totally ignored my blog and writing and went to a concert, and got to meet the artist too and take a photo 🙂 Korean Dramas…your guilty pleasure, Jess. Seems like you know how to balance that and blogging 😉

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  6. I was fascinated by Batman, Swanston and Hoddle when I saw them for the first time – they are terribly sad and pathetic, but so compelling. Their expressions encompass much of the essence of the human condition.
    When I was young, I felt pressure, too, but nothing like I know is placed on many children in the Chinese culture – from a Western perspective, it seems extreme. It has taken me a good few decades to honestly not worry about what others expect of me and, also to cut myself a lot more slack, compartmentalize and enjoy the moment. All I can say is be kinder to yourself, but I know you won’t 🙂 (until a few decades on, perhaps. Contrary to popular belief, there is much to enjoy about growing old 😀 )

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    • Compelling. Excellent word to describe the famous Melbourne statues. To be honest, I have no idea which one is Batman, Swanston and Hoddle. I’m guessing left to right. Can’t seem to find an official website page dedicated to explaining fully which is which and more about the artwork and artists.

      I guess whether we stress or not may be a generational thing too, apart from culture. Younger people like me tend to worry about “making it” – having a good job, having a stable future and so on. Many Asian parents have worked hard to escape their poor younger lives and I guess by pushing their children, they just want to impart the rewards of hard work. I will try to enjoy moments around me more, BB. I don’t want to miss out on experiencing things 🙂

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  7. Take a step back from what’s driving you up the wall… is a great and very important way to deal with stress. Some of the work may appear to be stressful, but when you get a good result then it can becomes rewarding. So, I try to focus on the result, but I don’t deal with stress well at all. 🙂 The photo of the statues is a perfect choice for this post.
    Keep writing, Mabel 🙂

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    • So true. A lot of the time, writing for me is stressful: does this sentence sound exciting? does my story makes sense? It can take days for me to write an article for the blog or publications at times, but when I finish it up, I feel proud of what I’ve done. Not because I’ve come to the end or many people like it, but that I’ve learnt something along the way and touched people’s hearts.

      Focusing on the end result is one way to push through stress and keep us motivated. I also think focusing on the moment and enjoy having what we’ve got is another way to deal with stress too – calms us down. Thanks for the compliment on the photo, Amy. Actually, I enjoy touching up the photos each week for my blog. I really love it 😀

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  8. I think this was an excellent post. I really enjoyed reading it and got so much out of it about. Thank you for sharing your thoughts with us. I am almost certain you have helped many people deal with stress by posting this (including myself).

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    • Thanks so much for your kind words, Hugh. I really appreciate it and they are very encouraging. Stress is different for every person and it comes in different forms. We can be stressed emotionally, or maybe stressed physically. We all stress at some point in our live, whether we know it or not. But if we recognise stress, the easier it will be for us to think positive again. I am glad this article helped you, and thank you for stopping by.

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  9. Ohhhh Mabel I loved this post and I didnt think it was boring! You write so well that I just want to keep going. Besides I totally understand you. I had times in my life that I was too much under stress, working, blogging, taking care of the house and husband, dog… and to be honest I know its hard to find a way to relax in those days.. think of things you like, what makes you happy? Eating a box of chocolate? Do it… but dont stop writing because I love your posts 😀 gimme a smile now! You will get passed this phase of stress and Im sure better days will come! Wish you the best 🙂

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    • Thanks, Allane. You’re too kind 😀 As I was reading your comment, I was actually eating a packet of Birthday Cake flavoured M&Ms. Yes, chocolate makes me happy and I do eat it when I’m feeling under pressure. But in this instance, I was eating the M&Ms because it was (is) Friday night. I guess I like to push myself because I like to achieve what I want to achieve – I am very determined and will rarely take “No” for an answer. But what am I complaining about? You have a husband and a pet to take care of. I’m sure a guy and an animal can be a handful 🙂

      Maybe I’ll stop writing for a while, maybe I won’t. We’ll see. I love your positive energy, I am smiling now. Now, grinning 😀

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      • You are most welcomed Mabel! I am happy to have made you smile a little! You seem a very determined person and I really admire that, and I dont think you are complaining, sometimes we just need to put our feelings out..and then we already feel better 😀 and I love M&M’s now Im craving for some! And dont feel pressured about writing, if you need take a little time off…whenever you feel like then you write again 😀 I wish an amazing and relaxing weekend!

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  10. Hi Mabel! Listen to your body. 🙂 Get enough sleep. The next day, you’ll feel energized. I think you need some ‘me’ time once in a while. Book a massage, go to a salon, do some body exercise, meet a friend, watch a movie, relax, reward yourself, not necessarily extravagant. Laugh! Surround yourself with positive people, it helps lessening the stress. Taking a break like playing computer games eased your mind, right?! You are correct! Stress isn’t really bad. And I admire your courage for admitting and doing something about it. 🙂 Whenever things don’t go my way, I always remind myself that I am blessed to be stressed! And hey, yours is not a boring post. A writer expresses his/her emotions, besides we’re only humans. We have feelings, we feel stressed at times and we have to deal with it 🙂

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    • My body is always telling me to sleep! Sometimes I think I’m lazy, that’s why. You’re right. “Me” time is what we need every now and then. Because if we don’t take care of ourselves first, how can we be fit and in the right state of mind to look out for others? Lol. When you said “games eased your mind”, I read it as “games ERASED your mind”. Which is actually a good way of putting it, actually 😀 But that only shows I’m tired and misreading things…

      I like your positive attitude. If we’re more positive and tell ourselves we’re lucky with what we have, I think we will learn to make use of what we have and stress less. Thanks so much for the nice words, they are very uplifting.

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  11. Everytime I got stressed during my study time I started to do some sports, such as bicycling for a few hours to clear my head. These days I still get stressed but usually about all kinds of things which have impact directly on my little families life. However each time I start to stress about these things I try (not always but mostly) to get little distance to the problem and look at it from a different viewpoint and usually see how easily it can be solved through a different approach or in most cases, how unimportant it is! It sounds weird but I tend to create problems on my own and get stressed.
    Sure this is most likely different to your stressed time but perhaps it might also help you 🙂

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    • Being an adult, growing up and getting married (in your case, me not yet) comes with their own kinds of stresses, which usually depends on our attitudes and personality. Stepping back from the problem or the stress sounds like a good approach and you’re right – we might see that we are stressing over something small and trivial. Or maybe we might be a bit OCD and that’s why we stress. I suppose with a family you have to look out for them while looking out for yourself. No surprise it can be a bit of a stressful balancing act, but I think you’re doing well 😉

      Don’t know why but my Spam folder ate your comment immediately. It’s been a while since this last happpened, I think it’s hungry.

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      • I noticed that the comment went straight to the spam folder. I have also a few people who comment on my blog who always end up in the hungry spam folder. Well, now I got used to check every day for spam 🙂

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        • You’re very sharp. When you try to post a comment and it disappears “poof”, you know it’s gone to the spam folder 😉 But I check my spam folder everyday so you don’t need to stress about your comments never seeing the light of day on my blog. Sometimes I check the spam folder and see nasty comments…which means the spam folder is eating what it needs to eat.

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  12. I’m sorry about all that. I think you should take a break and get some rest. I go through times like this too. I just back away and take a short “vacation” from all the things that aren’t absolutely necessary. (Next week, I’m going to take a break from my book and let my brain rest. I’m really looking forward to it.) I think your writing will benefit from that because you’ll come back to it with more energy and creativity. And your article sounds good, by the way!

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    • I really want to get away from Melbourne and just explore another town. It’s hard with a full time job but I’m certain the tide will turn soon. “all the things that aren’t absolutely necessary”. That is an interesting thing to say. I remember when I returned from a 3-week holiday from Malaysia over a year ago, I completely forgot my usual routine in Melbourne – at that time perhaps I was doing a lot of things everyday that weren’t all that important to me.

      Sounds like you spent your away time relaxing and recharging. I hope your book is going well and I look forward to reading it some day 🙂 Thanks for stopping by and commenting, Matt. Love it when you do.

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  13. I was always stressed about work and deadlines and long hours too, so I completely understand. I’m retired now and I’m still stressed about not getting enough done!
    I hope you can find a way to de-stress (exercise? meditation? more time in nature? — that suggestion about some green time with plants sounds good)
    btw, have you read “How to Blog a Book” — just a thought. I hope you keep writing — Sandy

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    • Retired life sounds like a blissful life. I hope you’re making the most of it, Sandy. Those are very good suggestions on how to de-stress. I actually really like the nature one. Pity that it’s raining and windy quite a bit lately in Melbourne. It’s winter here now. I do make it a point to go outdoors on the weekend and walk around the city randomly and taking in the sights. I find that that takes my mind off things. Sometimes I like to go through my closet to find some treasure, that is always calming too. Just like you 😉

      It is interesting you share “How to Blog a Book”. Thanks for that, will give it a read. Lately I have been thinking of what stories should I share in my book, and what stories I should share on this blog. Good timing.

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  14. I was getting stressed just reading your post! Hahahaha! It sounds like you are putting a lot of pressure on yourself. Which I completely understand, I just had a bawl-fest yesterday over this student in my class who made my life miserable. I think stress is our fears having a spaz-dance. Meditating and yoga definitely helps. And don’t forget music and dancing alone therapy!

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    • Hahaha! The last thing I want is someone feeling stressed from reading my posts! I hope you felt better after letting out your emotions. “stress is our fears having a spaz-dance”. Love how you say it. When we stress, we are afraid of failing and we think of everything that may go wrong. Which really gets us no where. I love those de-stressing suggestions. Music always calms me down, but at the same time distracts me from what I’m doing 🙂 I need to learn how to focus.

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  15. This is one topic each and every one in this world could relate to 🙂

    Yea, I do feel stressed at times, most of times due to personal reasons and official things triggers it rarely.

    As you said, once you start feeling stressed, something gets triggered inside and then there is an avalanche.

    Unless you find a way out it eats up your brain inside out.

    For me, to come out of it, I just goes somewhere out, if the trigger is personal and be with nature, may be just keep walking.

    Being alone, I talk to myself, and sometimes introspect and find solutions to the reasons behind the trigger.

    Once I am back home, most of times, I would be almost relaxed.

    One other way is working on my photos and checking out other people’s work, that really takes my mind away from all the negative thoughts 🙂

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    • You’re so right: we trigger an avalanche when we feel stressed. “it eats up your brain inside out.” LOL. That is so apt. Not only does stress eat up our minds, it does physical damage to our bodies too.

      Sounds like you deal with stress very well. Very rational about it, and I guess it helps you stay on top of things.

      It’s interesting to hear you say you feel less stressed looking at others’ works. When we stress, maybe we’re thinking too much about ourselves and get lost in our own thoughts. So to get back on track, it’s always good and refreshing to look at something else. Another perspective 🙂

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  16. I never really learned how to de-stress. I always thought that things resolved on their own. When I was working, I was almost always stressed out. It was not good – I risked my health. I was one sick lady then – my health got better after I got married and did not have to worry about a gazillion things going wrong.

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    • You sound so much like me, Imelda. I too think that things and situations will work out on their own. But I am so glad you don’t stress all that much anymore and lead a calmer, more content life. I guess when our health gets affected by stress, it’s big time we stop stressing and do something about it. I hope to learn this someday.

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  17. Pingback: How To Feel Less Stressed | puisidancerpen

  18. Personally I’m juggling a full time office job, blogging, child/family life (making dinners, delivering/picking up in the kindergarden, house chores etc).
    Sometimes I get too stressed at work because the work load is just way too much and I have gotten these insane headaches from it (migraine). I’ve decided to slow down the tempo at work so that if they want everything to be done, they’ll have to employ an extra person – because I’m not gonna risk my health for a job.

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    • Sounds like you are juggling multiple jobs, Cardinal. Running errands and taking care of the family is some form of work, we all know that…

      I find that if I stare at the computer too long I get migraines too, migraines that start right from the back of my head. Very annoying. Taking breaks is the way to go for any job. We need to take care and help ourselves first before we choose to help others. It can never be the other way round.

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  19. I just bike…and that’s why it’s part of my lifestyle. So in doing it, I don’t notice it much that I am de-stressing.

    Even so, stress leads for me, lack of sleep. So I’ve tried napping at times. Sometimes works.

    I actually don’t view blogging as contributing to my stress. It de-stresses ..a cathartic release and given my blog’s focus, reflect on some positive things.

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    • Biking is in your blood, Jean. Not surprised to hear biking makes you feel at east. Yes. Spot on. Lack of sleep leads to stress. When we’re tired, sometimes we don’t think straight and we might make bad judgements that we regret…and it all snowballs into stress. For me, reading blogs makes me forget about the world and my problems. Very therapeutic. The trick is to not spend TOO much time reading blogs and leaving time for nothing else. It’s all about balance.

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  20. Stress is always this double-edged sword. I hate it when it arrives and I struggle through it ~ but when the stressful period ends, I am happy to have experienced it as it is usually a bit motivating. Of course, these are just periods of stress that have a beginning and end.

    For those stressful times that seem to go on forever (i.e., work or relationship issues), then it is a matter of finding the silver-lining for me. Exercising and photography tend to do the trick for me, the reason I think is because these take my mind away from the stress and focuses on the more optimistic visions. It also exhausts me, so I tend to get a great night’s rest as well.

    Not to generalize, but I will 🙂 your experiences and stress within the Chinese culture seems to be shared by many Chinese friends I have, with schoolwork and just general life moments that I never really worried much about that they stress over so much. But I also see that changing a bit with the younger Chinese (like you) who appreciate the great things life offers and to experience: instead of stressing out and continuing to do the work that is causing stress ~ they find other outlets to relax.

    I hope your winter blues & flu vanish quickly 🙂

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    • Well said, Randall. We never like being stressed and frustrated, don’t we? Funny how we tend not to see stressful periods as challenges. They always are, and we always learn the most from the toughest of times. So it’s really nice to hear you say that you find stressful times motivating in some sense 🙂

      The more positive we are, the stronger we will be able to choose to de-stress and relax. As you’ve implied, it does help if we know what we enjoy doing. Thanks for the nice words. I think a lot of the younger Chinese generation are more aware of how too much stress is harmful to our health – and to our identity too, due to education. Stressing too much rarely gets us anywhere.

      Winter is here to stay in Melbourne for a while. Let’s hope I don’t catch another cold 🙂

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      • It is important to relax & de-stress too because it is easier to catch a cold when stressed as well (I think all my colds come from when I am under stress)…so be sure to take care of your health 🙂

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        • When we’re stressed, a big part of us shuts down – our abilities to see things straight and make decisions aren’t usually that sharp when we’re stressed. Adding to this, I guess our immune system likes to follow suit too. Hope you’re well, Randall, and enjoying summer. Winter in Melbourne is freezing, very annoying for me.

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  21. It is ok to stress, but don’t make it your lifestyle. When you marry and have kids (Make the first a boy, and be sure your husband is asian, a doctor or lawyer and with a good income) .. and your parents must approve .. but make sure that he isn’t subservient either .. he has to be his own man .. and listen well .. and not give things away .. the children must be respectful .. but not be shrinking violets either .. 😀 Peace, sister .. you are good .. very good .. write well and are deserving of the blessings that will fall your way even if you don’t stand the right way ..

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    • So true. Don’t make stress our lifestyle. Life is full of unpredictable moments, so a lot of the time I suppose it’s best we just accept what’s headed our way and deal with them as they come along. And so we shouldn’t worry to much about the future because, well, we can never be sure what will happen.

      Thanks for the nice words, David. It doesn’t hurt to be different so long as we stay true to ourselves.

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    • Haha, Dedy. I don’t like looking at myself. When I look in the mirror, I see a tired face. Oh well, I like to laugh at the silly things I do…like fall down. So I de-stress a bit. You’re funny, Dedy 😀

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  22. Great thoughts Mabel. Stress comes and stress goes 😉 The most important thing is to find something in your life to relieve the stress and having a good work-life-balance. As you said sometimes it’s not that easy to take a step back and relax for a while to recharge your batteries because there are always deadlines for projects at work or other stuff to do. It’s summertime over here as you know so I try to spend as much time outside as I can to relish spending my freetime with friends, doing Sport, having a swim in a nearby lake or just enjoy the sunshine. But last Saturday I had to work so it was a 6-day work week for me. I was exhausted and tired. So I just stayed at home doing nothing. Besides it was and it’s still too hot outside. Over 30°C and it’s not cooling down even at night. So I send you some some sunshine over and hope that you don’t feel stressed anymore.

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    • “Stress comes and stress goes”. Spot on, Anja. Balance is always the key, though sometimes it takes some time to work out how to achieve that. We can always choose to set aside time for things we want to do, no excuses 😉 That is good that you are making the most of the warm summer weather, more chance for you to go outdoors and relax with nature. It sounds like you’re working hard and long hours. Hope you remember to have fun, it sounds like you do.

      And also…hope you’re enjoying eating ice-creams in the summer 😉

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      • I don’t have to work long hours. Usually I only have a 40-hour week and I work in shifts. But as you know sometimes things need to be finished because there is a deadline. And we always have deadlines in the laboratory. The customers who are sending the samples for analysis tell us when they need to be finished. This could be a short deadline till next day or a longer one maybe 3 days or within a week. If you are organized and keep track of the deadlines then you don’t have to work longer. But iit can happen that something goes wrong with the analysis and you have to repeat it. Or it’s just a busy day where we receive more samples than usual. Then we have to stay and work longer. Unfortunately we don’t get paid for overtime.

        I hope you’re feeling better and that it’s not too cold and wet in Melbourne. And yes I enjoy eating icecream in the summer and luckily we have a few shops where they sell homemade icecream which is very delicious. Usually I prefer the creamy sorts of icecream like vanilla and chocolate. But in summer I like to eat sorbet because it’s moe refreshing 😀

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        • 40-hour week to me is a long week…though that is pretty standard everywhere around the world. So true, each job comes with work that have deadlines. Deadlines for customers and the bosses. Sounds like you’ve settled into your job already and hope it’s becoming easier for you 🙂 Sometimes when work doesn’t go according to plan, we have to be flexible about it: make more time for what we need to finish or if that fails, get our colleagues to help out. No need to stress because things will get done eventually. But in my case, being a perfectionist doesn’t help…

          It’s still cold in Melbourne but I’m feeling much better. I will be sure to visit your country just for the ice-cream. And to see you, of course!

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  23. Really great thoughts, Mabel. I’ve heard it said that stress always brings out what’s on the inside. You will usually see mature people respond in positive ways when they’re stressed, whereas you’ll see immature people respond negatively when stressed.

    No stress is the same, though, so my personal response to stress really varies case by case. If I’m at home and stressed, I usually tend zone out through video games or surfing online. If I’m out of the house in a stressful situation, I’ll typically remain pretty calm, especially if I’m with others. I find praying also very helpful in order to regain emotional balance.

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    • That is a very interesting thought, Chris: stress brings out what’s inside of us. Stress can bring out the darker side of us, let the world see how we cope under pressure. Sometimes under stress, we might lose it and yell at those around us, or we may hold it together and remain calm. Responding in a fiery way never helps the situation but usually makes us more stressed.

      You’re right. We all stress differently since we have different lives, partners, interests and lifestyles. Video games at home to take our mind off things…I guess that makes the two of us 🙂

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    • Wise words, Dragon. Probably a good thing to set aside time for a fun thing we all want to do each day. Doesn’t have to be big. It can be something as simple as eating alone in peace and quiet, or taking a half-an-hour walk by yourself.

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  24. I feel kinda stressed bc I can’t follow and read and comment as much as I would like to :/
    Right this second. Otherwise I feel stressed about many things. Well, more worried. No help from both of the emotions, really no use of them at all. Maybe stress can help “get things done” but if you can’t do it without feeling like crap, I don’t know, maybe you should be doing it?
    When I’m stressed I zone out. My space, my corner, my bed, everything is mine. My tea, my silence… 🙂

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    • “My space, my corner, my bed, everything is mine.” LOVE how you say that, Iva. When we de-stress, it’s usually about giving ourselves some “me-time” and being honest about what makes us comfortable and happy.

      Very interesting: should we stress and get things done even if we feel terrible? We might not even feel good afterwords, so what’s the point? Hmmm 💡

      Thank you so much for commenting and reading my posts. Your comments are so thoughtful and honest, and they were very entertaining to read. Love how you used the emoticons, and looking at them while reading your comments, I felt like you were talking to me in person with all those faces. I felt so happy when you mentioned Lindsey Stirling 😛

      Now I feel bad that I don’t comment too much. But next month, or very soon, I will…lots of time to myself then, hehe 😀 Thank you, Iva. You made someone very happy with your comments today.

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      • Awwwww that is so sweet of you… And I did actually said “awww” so yeah, I write as I think, or sometimes even speak to my laptop 🙂
        You said some lovely things here in your comment, I don’t wanna just go, thank you, thank you, thank you 😀

        But, yeah, thank you haha 😀
        It’s ok, I didn’t have energy to write, hopefully that will change veeery soon because I miss writing… I promised I will read, and, well, I seem to have an opinion on just about anything. My family is so happy with that 😄

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        • You can just say “Thank you” and I will be happy. No need to say other things. Actually, all your comments make me smile, like this 🙂 But most of the time it’s like this 😀

          Reading comments like yours make me feel less-stressed. Writing makes me less stressed too if I have a story I want to tell. For you, sounds like spending time with your family will makes you less stressed. Apart from time with yourself 😉

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  25. Stress is part of living but it should not be life. If I feel stress, I step back immediately and focus on relaxing and happy things. Then I take a fresh take on what needs to be done. Most of the time it’s me driving myself too hard. So I let go and let be. Laughing helps and works for me too. Keep on smiling and writing! 🙂

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    • You said it so well: stress “should not be life”. Nothing worse than being tense all the time. Not only is it bad for us emotionally, but physically too. Sounds like you know how to manage stress, and recognise the signs of stress – and it’s usually when we’re upset and kicking up a fuss about something.

      “…let go and let be” I like that. I think whenever I’m stressed, I’ll take a step back, think of this phrase and come back to what I’m doing later. Thanks for the encouragement, Lola 🙂

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