Living without stress frees you to love more deeply, listen more clearly and laugh more freely. It opens you up to your natural, healthy state of being. Stress is only one option and, after reading this book, one you no longer need to choose. Be well. Be happy. Not just for you, but for your family, friends and colleagues. To paraphrase George M. Cohan, “your mother will thank you, your father will thank you, your sister will thank you” and you will thank you.
So what is stress? We are all taught that “stress is bad.” But we don’t truly understand why. (Another lapse in our high school education?) Stress is an autonomic reaction to a perceived threat. Once engaged, it can either be shut down quickly or allowed to gain momentum and flourish. Over the long term, unchecked stress leads to the hospital or the cemetery. It also leads to diminished relationships, lost moments and unrealized opportunities. While stress is initially experienced by an individual, its effects are felt also by those around that person. Like a pebble tossed into still water, it upsets the tranquility, and the ripples extend outward more and more.
Stress causes you to change the way you relate to those around you. You may become angry, uneasy, impatient or even rude. Your tolerance level can tumble, and your fuse might shorten considerably. It might not take much for you to start yelling or crying. Pent up emotions that explode without restraint can cause a chain reaction that affects everything and everybody in their wake.
Alot of what Nancy talks about in this book is common sense, however what I have noticed in life is that a lot of us have forgotten what “common sense” is. Nancy drives you back to the basics that center our lives in many ways. She asks you to do a lot of self-evaluation and reflection and fear may be the first thought and feeling you have. “What if my answer is the wrong answer?” you worry. Relax, because there is no wrong answer since there is only one you. Develop a plan. Life is a series of plans, some more involved than others, some requiring more work than others. However if you have a plan, the sudden road blocks that life throws your way are not so difficult to handle.
Now you can read this book or you can really read this book. When a work page pops up, don’t turn the page and continue reading. Take the time to invest in yourself. Ask yourself the question posed, think about a response and most importantly be honest. The only person you are going to kid is yourself! Nancy has walked the walk and talked the talk in both her personal and professional life. Listen to what she has to say, internalize the tools that solve problems and decide to be happy by reducing the amount of stress in your life.