Taking action to reduce stress is not a luxury, it is a necessity.
Every year when the holiday season rolls around, I hear more and more folks talking about how stressed out they get. Now we pile that on to perhaps an over stressed work situation, home situation, community situation and so on, then we get a recipe for misery and suffering. Remember the Buddha said pain is inevitable, suffering is optional.
Two things cannot occupy the same space. There is no exception with emotional energy. You cannot be angry and happy at the same time. You cannot be jealous and grateful at the same time. You cannot be hateful and loving at the same time. You cannot be afraid and eager at the same time.
This week let’s practice using the law of substitution when we are faced with a negative situation. Instead of responding how we might normally respond, being angry, afraid, jealous – could you substitute gratitude, love, happiness. If that seems too far of a stretch, could you substitute silence and use the affirmation “I can see what I choose to see”.
There are many ways to shift the situation so that it doesn’t take hold as a stressor for the psyche and soma – mind and body. Because our body believes every word we say, whether we are telling another or ourselves, it’s a good idea to check in on what words we are using to describe a situation.
When we remove the opinion of the situation and we can see it for what it is, then we are better able to make and take conscious, healthy actions.