Lifeline Connections

Is Stress Necessary? Stress Awareness Month

Okay, so maybe you’re getting tired of someone attaching some theme to every month. Hear me out on this one, though, because there is a trend in our society that I think is causing more harm than good.

One example that comes to mind is Arianna Huffington. If you aren’t familiar with who she is, she is one of the co-founders of the Huffington Post. For years she ran the post on only a few hours of sleep a night. She was convinced that sleep was a waste of time and that the success of her company was based on her hard-work and putting the time into it. Eventually, she found herself lying on her office floor with a broken cheekbone. She had fainted due to exhaustion and hit her face on her desk on the way down. This was almost something of a cathartic experience for her, and since then she has become a major proponent of the importance of sleep and rest. She has written a book about it and prides herself in being an authority about the science behind a good night’s rest.

Another woman named Lindsey Boggs is a well-known, highly-followed consultant on LinkedIn. She is in the top 1% of profile views on LinkedIn and had what many would call the “perfect lifestyle” with her perfect family, perfect car, perfect job, etc. She was constantly sharing her “life” on various media sites, and spending the rest of her time checking for likes, shares, etc. But she felt like her life was falling apart and in December of last year, she checked herself into a mental rehabilitation facility. She decided to share her experience because she started to realize that there is a real problem in our society to value our stressful digital vanity over our actual lives.

These women showed me something that I know I needed to learn this year: that stress may seem glamorous and desirable and even necessary to living a successful life, but it comes at a very serious price. That price is peace, family, friends, and even our mental and physical stability.

While occasional stress is a normal part of life, we are always in control of how we handle that stress. If you haven’t already, consider new options for destressing at the end of your day. John Gottman gives some great tips for couples. If you and your partner find it difficult to enjoy time together in the evening because of spill-over work stress, then try this. If you prefer to destress on your own, perhaps your own routine can consist of things like a technology detox, reading, taking a bubble bath, or practicing mindfulness. Believe it or not, I actually enjoy doing dishes as a way to slough off the responsibilities from my day.

One important thing to remember: stress is not necessary for a happy, successful life. Living a balanced life will provide more fulfillment than any shared post or extra hour spent on a project.

At Lifeline Connections, our purpose is to guide you toward that fulfilling life. If you are struggling to find that balance and take back control for your life, check out our outpatient treatment, co-occurring disorders program, or residential treatment. We offer many options to customize your recovery and want to give you the best chance at a clean, joyful life. Feel free to contact us via phone or email:

Phone: 360-397-8246 ext. 7580  Email: admissions@lifelineconnections.orgh

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