By:  John Holmgren

I received this story recently and want to share it with you.  The message is hard to do, especially under duress, but is entirely true.  Here it is:

A woman confidently walked around the room, leading and explaining stress management to an audience.  She raised a glass of water.  Everyone knew she was going to ask the question, ‘half empty or half full?’ She fooled them by asking, “how heavy is this glass of water?”

Answers ranged from 8 oz. to 20 oz.

Her answer, however, was, “the absolute weight doesn’t matter. It depends on how long I hold it. If it is for a minute, that’s not a problem. If it is for an hour, I’ll have an ache in my arm. If it is for a day, you’ll have to call an ambulance. It’s the same weight, but the longer I hold it, the heavier it becomes.”

Her point was, “that’s the way it is with stress. If we carry our burdens all the time, sooner or later, as the burden becomes increasingly heavy, we won’t be able to carry on.”

As with the glass of water, you have to put it down for a while and rest before holding it again. When we’re refreshed, we can carry on with the burden, hold the stress longer and act more effectively.

So, as early in the evening as you can, put all your burdens down. Don’t carry them through the evening and into the night. Relax. Start again later, after you’ve rested.

You will be ready and better equipped to take them on again.

Cheers, John