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.
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.
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.
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.
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..
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..
When do you feel stressed? How do you relax?