Life pressures are on the increase, and they’re here to stay. You may not be able to stem the tide, but you don’t have to be swamped by stress.
Realising that you have a degree of control – even though it may not feel like that – is a step towards developing a greater sense of ‘personal agency’, and not only surviving, but flourishing. You may not be able to control life pressures, but you can prepare yourself and control how you respond to events.
Life pressure comes from two main types – events and your expectations about events. You can’t manage the first kind, but the second, you can.
Life pressure is caused by two main factors. There are the external demands, challenges, obstacles and difficulties that are part of life. Though they can be annoying and even problematic (stress is a major contributor to under-performance and ill-health, after all), managing them successfully helps you grow and develop. If things go well, the more you do it the better you get. Experience helps you learn how to manage demand and, though the pressure doesn’t go away, you are better able to handle it.
The second cause of life pressure is closely linked to the first. It comes from your own expectations, attitudes and demands. You carry these with you constantly and they act as a filter through which you view the external pressures. The pressure you feel is driven by our thoughts and imaginings.
You may not be able to avoid or change the external challenges of life pressures, but you can manage your own expectations, attitudes and demands. Simple though it sounds, it may not be so easy, as first.
It can be learned though, so stick at it and make it a habit.