By David Coy
The word stress comes from the Latin word strictus, meaning “to be drawn tight.” In Old French it is estresse, “narrowness or tightness.” An English medical dictionary describes it as “an organism’s total response to environmental demands or pressures.” In the use of physics and mechanics, it is used for the forces which cause external pressure and for the internal strength to balance them. I think it is safe to say our country and the world has been experiencing external pressures some by nature others by man. We all experience stress, though some balance it better than others. It can affect our physical, social, emotional and mental health; thus, the more we learn how it affects us and how best we should learn to balance our stress. It is believed that our nervous system provides the needed energy to meet the responsibilities in response to external forces. We also know that when we do not balance or manage our external pressures and the impression of being overwhelmed well depression could develop. This, in turn, may create feelings of despair for our future.
Our challenge now is to not allow our current circumstances to compel us to feel helpless, hopeless and in despair just because we may be uncertain of specific details concerning our future. We have been in unfamiliar territory before; we all have. We never have all the answers to the myriad of questions and doubts, which are all quite normal. Every and any loss can and might produce a stronger internal coping system as we learn to balance external pressures with our yield point or failure point. Similar to how physical metals react to stress. The stronger our support system the stronger our coping mechanism (1 Peter 5:7). Stress can be managed. We can cope.
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