In all philosophies and religions the lot of man is shown as full of trials as a means to test the true metal of one’s character and moral fibre. The idea is that the more trials you go through and the more turbulent your life, the more your patience, strength and abilities are tested.
Stress seems to be the norm of our current lives. Not only is there daily stress through the media, spreading anxiety about the economy and the future but there is also a great deal of stress through social media and the continued stream of news, most of which is either exaggerated or sometimes totally fabricated.
Added to that is the stress of each individual’s daily problems. Of course each sees his/her problem as the worst, just because they are the ones going through them. Yet the sum total of these different types of stress end up being dealt with differently, each according to his/her character and tolerance.
Some deal with stress by taking anti anxiety medication, others go on food or other binges, and others still let off steam by snapping and growling at all and sundry. Some cope better by controlling their behaviour, yet stress manifests itself either in a deteriorating health or symptoms of some sort of pain or another, like migraine headaches or nervous stomachs.
What is the best way to cope with stress? Moderate exercise, healthy eating and the company of congenial friends, perhaps even to listening to music, reading a light book and enjoying nature or your pets.
What does all this do? It increases the production of endorphins, which, to my mind are little happy butterflies that are suddenly released by your brain into your bloodstream to make you happy, feel light, appreciate the warmth and beauty of life and give you a deep sense of satisfaction and contentment. These little butterflies make you sleep better, make you more tolerant with others, and miraculously cure your physical and spiritual ailments.
Through many of my trials I had found a coping mechanism that had helped me not only survive, but come out even stronger at the end of it. The one sure thing is that nothing lasts. When I am going through a difficult time I know that this too will come to an end, one way or another. In the meantime, I strongly believe in crossing heavy ground as lightly as possible. – to spare myself as much stress as possible, even though this might mean giving myself a much needed break by running away from my daily life into my limitless imagination.
There, in the world of the imagination, I can create a fantastic world, filled with all that would make me happy. It is a very private world, tailor-made by me for my own gratification. Even just a few minutes in that world are enough to give me a much needed respite from my actual, difficult world. That is why one of the most attractive aspects of a virtual world is the illusion that I can do or be whatever I want.
Coping mechanisms work only if they suit the character and temperament of the one using them. In the end, whatever works is what should be used.