Wednesday, October 6, 2010

More Time With Family Helps with Stress

Valerie Steimle

I woke up this morning in a panic. There is so much to catch up on every day. That feeling of dread spreads as I listen and read to what is going on in the world. I’ve been reading a lot of news clips, watching news on the internet and deleting emails about the news.

Our American way of life seems to be changing. It is stressful to watch the news, read the newspaper, or open emails. We are overwhelmed with what the future might bring. We are overwhelmed with all that we are expected to do and have to do. We are frustrated from stress at work and whether we will have a job to go to every day. We are frustrated many times from being overly tired from the lack of a goodnight’s sleep. Apathy occurs and then we lose hope.

From the website it is written: “Stress is an unavoidable consequence of life. As Hans Selye (who coined the term as it is currently used) noted, ‘Without stress, there would be no life’. However, just as distress can cause disease, it seems plausible that there are good stresses that promote wellness. Stress is not always necessarily harmful. Winning a race or election can be just as stressful as losing, or more so, but may trigger very different biological responses. Increased stress results in increased productivity; up to a point. However, this level differs for each of us. It's very much like the stress on a violin string. Not enough tension produces a dull, raspy sound. Too much tension makes a shrill, annoying noise or snaps the string. Just the right degree can create a magnificent tone. Similarly, we all need to find the proper level of stress that allows us to perform optimally and make melodious music as we go through life.”

So how can you find the balance you need to survive? Plan for more time with your family. It is no secret that the time with your family helps deal with the stresses of life even though we might wonder as a family how we all got to where we are now.
Erma Bombeck says it well: “We were a strange little band of characters, trudging through life sharing diseases and toothpaste, coveting one another’s desserts, hiding shampoo, borrowing money, locking each out of our rooms, inflicting pain and kissing to heal it in the same instant, loving, laughing defending, and trying to figure out the common thread that bound us all together.”

Make your important time, your family time. Life is much easier to deal with when you have the support of your family. As the old Chinese proverb says: “A family in harmony will prosper in everything”. I couldn’t agree more.