Modern life is busy – very busy. It is the speed and pressure that lead many people to say that they are stressed. I realise that for some people this is true but I am also increasingly concerned that we see stress as a badge of honour. If we can talk about being under pressure we are showing that we are busy, important and have a lot to do. For some people saying they are under pressure is becoming as common as when you used to say you were bored as a teenager.
I have been guilty of talking about feeling the strain of modern life, the pressure of work and the demands to achieve things all day every day. When this happens instead of seeing the positive elements in life I see everything as a challenge or struggle.
Rather than talking about the pressure perhaps we should spend more time talking about the ways to manage the challenges of life. There is a lot we can gain by focusing on being mindful or meditating. Taking some time to recharge our batteries and just clear our minds from the elements that create pressure.
We need to move to a position where talking about the ways to ‘destress’ or manage our pressures is what people are doing. The competition should be about how much you have been mindful or meditated and not about how stressed you are, or have been.
Don’t get me wrong I really do have sympathy for people who find themselves unable to cope with things, whatever they are. I have known people who really struggling and battling with events, issues and other aspects of daily life. It is vital that we ensure these people get the help they need and have the support to move forward with their lives. But it is also important for us to make sure we don’t default into talking about pressures or stress when it is something we can easily manage ourselves. The narrative of modern life must move away from stress and towards mindfulness.