Simon Kolz

A weblog by Simon Kolz

Choose a Stressless Lifestyle!

A stressless lifestyle? That’s very easy to say.
Yet it is so important. Our health should be our # 1 priority.
We all know that, and still we keep hearing about yet another
work mate who is now on the sick-list for several weeks to come.

The book stores are filled with books on stress management.
But, should we manage stress or reduce it? Stress and burnout
are two very common signs of a lifestyle that needs to be
changed. The changes must take place on three levels:

1. Our society
2. Our place of work
3. Our personal life

The third level, our private life, is the one that we can change
most easily. But we must also make efforts to bring about
changes on our job/school and keep claiming that society
takes its responsibility for our health. Of course, there are
no easy solutions.

Back to our question: Should we manage or reduce stress?
Personally I do not like the word “manage”. It doesn’t have
a good ring to it. To me, manage sounds like trying to handle
a situation by working very hard. I close my eyes and see this
tired out woman carrying heavy shopping bags up the stairs.
“I’ll manage”, she says as her heart pounds heavily. I don’t
want to be that woman. And maybe that is not at all what the
stress experts mean when they use the word “manage”. But,
still, I prefer the word “reduce”.

On the personal level we can do a lot to reduce stress. There is
also stress that cannot be totally reduced. Then we need to learn
how to manage it. But watch out, because your boss might
prefer that you manage when you could reduce! It has become
a virtue to manage stress in our modern society. Don’t try to
be the perfect employee, the perfect partner or the perfect
parent. When you can reduce, don’t manage. Start with reducing
the unnecessary stress, then learn to manage the necessary in
a way that is good for your general health.

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