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My poor blog has reached out and said “feed me, Patty.” Well, blog, here you go. Most of my posts have been on hobbies and cooking. This one will be a bit different.

My life has taken on a lot of additional stress. There is increased new business which is good but is generating a lot of work. There are elderly mothers who seem to grow ever more needy. Sometimes it feels like all I do is work – for someone else, not myself. Which is interesting as I own my own business.

Being the rainmaker and key decision maker in both my business and my home means being stressed all the time. My family and business associates suffer because of this. It’s not my intention to be overly grumpy but at times there is no way around it.

The biggest issue for me is not having adequate support to shore me up when I feel especially downtrodden. A friend that I had hoped would be that support is more critical than helpful. My belief is they have their own demons and there is no room for me and my problems.

My family has their own issues and I, as the matriarch, should be giving support rather than asking for it.

That’s when it hit me – I am the maker of my own destiny and therefore should be the provider of my own support. I need to focus on handling the stress and finding ways to manage it rather than hoping the support will come from elsewhere.

Over the last year I have fallen in love with yoga and meditation. Looking back, I realize that when I am my most content and relaxed is during those times. That means I need to remember those feelings at the moments when I feel the most overwhelmed. Sit back. Close my eyes. Breathe. Chuckle – right.

Writing these words now is actually helping. It is up to me to manage the stress and how I handle it. People around me have their own stressful lives and are struggling to manage their own issues. If someone is overly critical or negative, I need to listen, but not absorb that negativity. I also need to make sure I am not the reason for the negativity – I need to channel my stress elsewhere.

Life is challenging. We live in a stressful world. That’s not going to change. What has to change is my reactions to them. And when a person is over stressed, trying to deal with things outside of our control is hard. However, that is the key thing – they are outside of our control. It’s our own inner peace that will rule the day.

Norman Vincent Peale said “The life of inner peace, being harmonious and without stress, is the easiest type of existence”. Now I just need to figure out how to live that life.

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