“Stress should be a powerful driving force, not an obstacle.” - Bill Phillips
The man speaks the truth. However, more often than not, it’s difficult to see stress as anything but an obstacle. When I’m stressed, I often imagine it as my brain trying to run through treacle. In her autobiography Bossypants, Tina Fey describes herself as ‘blorft’ -"’Blorft’ is an adjective I just made up that means 'completely overwhelmed but proceeding as if everything is fine and reacting to the stress with the torpor of a possum.'”
I can relate.
I’ll be honest - we’re all friends here - I get stressed a lot. Not as often as I did when I was a moody teenager (when my biggest problem was whether or not I had time to straighten my hair for school), but I do still sweat the small stuff. And I tend to find that this takes me down one of two routes; I either harness my stress and blitz whatever I have to do, or stick my head in the sand and have a nap.
But above all else, the thing that stresses me out the most is not having a plan. This can be day-to-day, or long term. For example, on a day trip, I like to know where I need to be, how long activities will take, and journey times. This really annoys my other half who is so laid-back he’s basically horizontal. Apparently being “spontaneous” is more fun than being organised? Hm.
I also asked around the office to see what makes people at iHasco stressed...
The answer two of our tech team gave was “people”.
The general consensus was that getting behind with work and being inundated with tasks is one of the things that stresses people out the most.
Other answers included:
- “The close proximity to nuclear weapons”
- “The inevitable demise of mankind as we spiral uncontrollably into the abyss of self-destruction and irreversible damage to our planet”
- “The iniquities of the selfish and the tyranny of evil men”
- “My mother”“When my Yorkshire Puddings don’t rise”
- “The fact that it's not hugely legal to throw things at people in shops”
- “My inbox getting clogged with everyone replying to this email!”
Aside from the fear of imminent vapourisation and the occasional existential crisis, most of the responses given were just everyday annoyances. These alone don’t necessarily need to be a problem, but when they build, it can be difficult to organise your thoughts and navigate through the stress.
The team also mentioned that spending time with loved ones, going for a quiet walk or watching a favourite TV series were their favourite ways to wind down after a stressful day. According to Lottie, as soon as she puts her pyjamas on, her stress dissolves. Will says he opts for the sing-along in the car and junk-food-for-dinner option.
Everyone has their own stresses, and their own ways of dealing with them - what are yours, and what helps you wind down?