Stressed? Don’t Worry, Be HAPPY!
Bills mounting to the ceiling, kids are acting like wild animals, the car in the shop for yet another problem, and “OOPS, I said I would meet you today at 1? Sorry.” Let’s be honest, sometimes it feels like you just can’t keep your head above water no matter how hard you try.
Then you start asking yourself, “Why me!” Well I’m here to tell you, you’re not alone. According to the American Institute of Stress (New York), 73% of adults regularly experience psychological symptoms caused by stress. Many would look at the statistics and think, “Well everyone else is doing it. I guess I’ll just have to accept stress as a daily part of my life.” Now I’m here to tell you, you don’t have to! (Insert excited-smiley face and hallelujah praise dance here)
How freeing and liberating would it be if you didn’t have to accept stress in your life. If you could learn to be happy and content in any situation. “How could I do that?” you ask. “I can’t control all the situations that come my way.” And you’re right, you can’t, but you can control your reaction and/ or attitude about it. I know it sounds cliché. Everyone says it, but who really does it?
I’m going to tell you a little story about Michelle. Michelle was a recent graduate from North Carolina State University. Of course most college graduates don’t understand the hardship of finding their first job, but oh boy do they find out. So now it’s been two months post her celebratory accomplishment and every job prospect that came Michelle’s way pretty much fell through the ceiling.
At this point she started to question her worth, education, experience, and ability to land a job in her career field. And on top of that, being that Michelle was now in that “real world” everyone was talking about, bills and other issues started coming her way that wound up causing her to be stressed. She didn’t want to go out anywhere. She didn’t want to communicate with friends and she started letting not having a job get the best of her.
One day, while looking in the mirror, Michelle closed her eyes and thought, “You know what, I’m just not going to be stressed anymore.” She opened her eyes and went about the day letting go all her feelings of doubt and anxiety. And you know what? She had a pretty good day. No her situation didn’t change, but her attitude did. She knew stressing about the problem wouldn’t change it and she decided that she wouldn’t let it control her any longer. You know what happened next? Yep, you guessed it. She got a phone call about a job a month later.
Now Michelle’s story may not be your story. Take out Michelle’s name and insert your name. Take out Michelle’s story and insert your own story of triumph after trial. And for those of you who are going through it right now, hopefully this story gives you encouragement that, repeat after me, it-will-all-work-out-in-the-end!
We all go through storms, but just like a physical storm, there’s usually a rainbow at the end if you stick it out long enough to find out. Life is not easy. I believe we’ve all learned that one way or another, but we can make the daily choice to choose happiness over sadness and rest over stress. Like the famous Bobby McFerrin song says:
“In every life we have some trouble
But when you worry you make it double
Don’t worry, be happy”
-Keturah Greene, Liberty County Chamber of Commerce Public Information/Event Assistant