Please try to understand

If I say to you, “I’m sad”  Do you actually know what I’m feeling?

We have words to describe different emotions, but there’s really no way to fully know how each individual person experiences them. We can only sympathize so far. When a friend is upset, we can imagine how we would feel in that situation, but we may not be picturing it correctly. We have different capacities for handling stress and emotional disruption. So we literally “feel” things differently. This can be unfortunate because when you are trying to sympathize with a friend, you could act either too calloused or overly sensitive.

The best way to compensate for that is to avoid projecting your own emotions into the situation, seek to understand, and let them create the picture for you as they talk and you listen.

And even if you never fully “get it” Your loved ones will appreciate your genuine effort toward understanding and that in itself will help to encourage them.

Mindless Productivity

We all experience stress. Our heart races, we tense up, we get flustered, and distracted. When we start to experience stress we generally resort to a mindless activity that calms us. For some its comfort food, TV shows, yelling rampages, and the list continues.

I suggest that instead we should create habits that will become our mindless activities when we get stressed out.

Good examples would be: exercise, reading our Bible, cleaning,  a random act of kindness Etc...

If we put habits in place, we can be productive even when we aren’t thinking about it

To-Do Lists

I’ve always been the queen of the ‘To-do’ list, and figured I had a good system since I could furiously cross items off my list.Yet I noticed an interesting pattern in my life. I did indeed complete whatever went on my list. The only problem was, I never actually finished the list. (for me that was torturous because I love the feeling of completion.) Every day I would jump out of bed ready to tackle my list, and at the end of the day, I would either have added new things, or still have pending projects. So I would transfer everything to a clean sheet of paper and start over the next day. I was never done.

So I started scheduling. Instead of  having a constant running list of things that needed to be done, I would put projects on my calendar. They had a specific date assigned to them, so I didn't have them on my list and I didn't need to worry about them until that day.

This saved me a lot of stress because I stopped feeling overwhelmed by the sheer amount of things I wanted to accomplish. Now I can actually finish my entire day’s work and rest knowing that I completed what I set out to do. It’s a great feeling!