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How do yoy deal with STRESS?

Old 08-27-2010, 10:55 PM
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How do yoy deal with STRESS?

In a series of books I have read lately, on maintaining a lasting sobriety, the issue of stress has been mentioned as a leading “trigger” for relapsing. Actually not so much the “stress” as it is how we deal with those stressful situations. I have been working on a list of things that cause me stress. I have also been working on how to best deal with those times instead of turning to alcohol as a relief valve. A few of the things on my list are; 1) High demands at my work 2) High expectations others place on me 3) High expectations I place on myself and on my time 4)Conflicts I face with others( I much prefer peace and tranquility) 5) inability to control situations. Just to name a few.
I wear many “hats” in the community in which I live. I am on the city council, an officer on the local fire department, and a local business owner, just to name a few. I also am the primary care giver to my mother 86 and my dad who is 87, both of which are not in the best of health.
Sorry to ramble on about ME. The point is, I know we all face stress stressful things on a daily basis. I am asking how you deal with those stressful times without wanting to run and hide. Any helpful ideas will be gladly received I just know I CAN”T turn back to alcohol. Thanks!!
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Old 08-27-2010, 10:58 PM
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I de-stress by reading. I love to read. I bought a nice comfortable chair for my bedroom and that is where I sit and read. It is so relaxing.
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Old 08-28-2010, 12:30 PM
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I have been reading about disassociation...learning how to seperate your trite self from your emotions...so far its working well:-)
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Old 08-28-2010, 06:46 PM
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mostly humor, sometimes apathy
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Old 08-28-2010, 07:28 PM
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Originally Posted by HidLid View Post
mostly humor, sometimes apathy
me too occasionally I take it out on others.

On a more serious note though - I cause all the stress in my life! If I were more motivated, less impulsive with spending, and managed my time better id be relatively stress free, im getting better at it though
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Old 08-28-2010, 08:07 PM
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Mostly I travel the that long river in Egypt. If I stay there long enough the problems either go away or explode. Problems that go away are not problems anymore, and problems that explode are easier to handle because I go into crisis management mode and all resources are available. It is pretty childish strategy, but it is what I am good at. I probably otta work on that...

LaF, is this the Dyer book talking about disassociation?
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Old 08-28-2010, 09:15 PM
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Dyer and starting on some Tolle...its been a major help...when I feel anxiety building I can step outside myself now!
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Old 08-28-2010, 09:40 PM
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Anybody remember the movie with Bill Murray called "Multiplicity"? Maybe I could clone myself! Ahh, never mind, that would only cause me to stress out in several places at the same time. (lol)
I'M serious though, today I took my wife out to a nice dinner and had to really fight the urge not to order a double shot of Curveo 1800. That was the first time I really felt temped in 3-4 months. Mom had another mini-stroke this week and dad has had 2 eye surgeries in the last 2 weeks. I'm glad to be here for them but it is taking a toll on me physically and emotionally. I've come too far to turn back now, but I need to learn how to deal with" "stuff" better than I do....HELP!!
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Old 08-28-2010, 10:29 PM
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Well seeing as you mentioned Bill Murray, have you seen the movie 'What about Bob?' Its pretty old, but nothing like a good comedy to lighten the mood.....perhaps I was too young when I saw it and it added to my apprehension about seeking one on one therapy!

I hope your parents get better soon
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Old 08-28-2010, 10:31 PM
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luckedog I can only give you my childish slacker advice. But I can tell you that you cannot worry enough to make any difference. Either do something that helps to resolve the problem, or put it out of your mind. Some problems are not problems, they are predicaments. Predicaments are irresolvable. My mum is 89, (but she lies and tells everyone she is 82), it takes a lot of effort from time to time to help her out. But I have pretty much resolved that I cannot live her life for her, I cannot make her younger, and I cannot make her health more robust. I help where I can, and accept help when it is offered.

Putting something out of your mind is no simple task. You cannot not think about something. The only thing I can do is think about something else, I know I sound like a broken chant, but meditation is sometimes the only peace I get. Neomarxist wrote a great post the other day how alcohol was the reset button for his mind, and it was true for me too. It was a powerful way to escape and reboot. Away from chemicals, the reboot is much more subtle.

One thing that has worked for me in the past was hypnotherapy. It was a brief sober period in my life a few years ago, and I was living in a world of sh!t. Solid walls of stress were making me a basket case. She gave me a visualization that was very helpful. She put me into trance and had me visualize my self on the beach (a favorite place of mine) and I went around collecting things on the beach and putting them into a backpack. The things were a metaphor for my troubles and worries. Once I filled the pack, she had me close it, place in on the sand and walk away. It was about giving myself permission to detach for awhile and get some perspective. A month later my father died and I chose to return to the world of sh!t with a bottle in hand... Oh well, I still drag out that visualization form time to time. I hope you find a non-chemical way to reset.
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Old 08-29-2010, 12:46 AM
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Thanks recycle, that makes a lot of sense to me I appreciate your input!
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Old 08-29-2010, 01:38 AM
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At one point in my life I felt everything was out of my control, especially work and several quality of life debilitating health issues.

On the way to work one really windy day I stopped in wonder before a small, 2 foot tall hemlock tree. The wind was gusting at over 60 miles an hour and the young hemlock would lean heavily with the wind, every branch shaking wildly downwind of the trunk. When each gust subsided, the hemlock would shake softly as it settled back into its normal vertical self, every branch hanging in balanced normalcy, then be still as if nothing had ever happened.

I stood there for about ten minutes (it was beside a sidewalk hidden from view from houses or the street) marvelling at despite how violent or long the gusts were, the little hemlock would easily shrug them off.

Somehow, that image has stayed with me, and now when things seem to be unraveling around me I stop, take a moment to collect my emotions, and tell myself, "Be the hemlock".

Weird, but works for me.

Murray
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Old 08-29-2010, 02:02 PM
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Thanks,Murray, that is A great point of view! I will remember that one.
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Old 08-29-2010, 10:43 PM
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luckedog,

I struggle to remember not to let my ego take credit for the results of my efforts. It seems like any accomplishment would be (mine) ....but, for me, only my efforts are truly (mine) and whatever follows [success or failure; ...or something inbetween] is just the natural result of my effort.

I guess it has to do with my "expectations" relationship to my "serenity"

Higher Expectations= Less Serenity

Lowered Expectations=Greater Serenity

You obviously have a full and demanding life, so you would naturally feel many people have high expectations, and in turn; you have high expectations of yourself also. It may be healthy to come to believe that those "expectations" can only be attached to your efforts (work), ............normally great results follow hard, well thought out efforts, but not always.

I'm having a tough time trying to explain the distinction, I think.

Anyway,
When I began to look at things this way, it seemed to relieve a lot of unnecessary stress.
The "not playing God" thing, wanting to control (and take credit for)the results of everything.

Stay Strong brother, ....you've got a lot on your plate.
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Old 08-29-2010, 11:02 PM
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I'm sorry for your stress luckedog.

Long term stress and worry are hard to deal with - but alcohol (and.or drugs) are at best a short term band aid, and it's a band aid that brings many other negatives into play for folks like you and me.

It's just not a sane rational or logically viable option for us..
Wherever the answer lies it lies elsewhere.

Without getting too OT for this forum...I try to remember I can only do so much...even at my best there's a lot that simply not in my control.

I just do what I can.
D
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Old 08-30-2010, 08:25 AM
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Topspin
-"You obviously have a full and demanding life, so you would naturally feel many people have high expectations, and in turn; you have high expectations of yourself also. It may be healthy to come to believe that those "expectations" can only be attached to your efforts (work), ............normally great results follow hard, well thought out efforts, but not always."
Thanks topspin, I understand what you’re saying, will work on putting it into practice!
Dee, As always, Good advice! Thanks
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Old 09-07-2010, 05:33 AM
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When I am STRESSED, I just do the opposite. I eat DESSERTS.
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Old 09-08-2010, 01:59 AM
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I LIKE That!!!!
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Old 09-08-2010, 01:55 PM
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I deal with stress by exercising-- going to the gym or taking long fast walks, works for me every time.
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