"Stress can be destructive at the same time constructive to spiritual growth."
When we do more than our Mind and Body is capable of, then we will be putting ourselves in a state of Stress.
Excess stress can make us feel "weighted down," tired and unhappy. It can make us feel weak and as if the future looks bleak.
This article looks at the ways to address the suffering states of mind associated with excess stress.
Stress In Depth
Ultimately we will all want to get to a stressless state of Mind and Body. A life without stress indeed is a happy one. But before we begin exploring the ways to make that journey, it is important first to also look at the benefits of stress. Yes, there is also a constructive side to experiencing stress.
For instance, when we stress our body through strenuous exercise it can help us to grow muscles. This is because when the body experiences stress it will trigger its functions to repair and make it stronger so that it can handle that stress better next time.
Similarly, when we stress our mind through putting ourselves through challenging experiences i.e. facing our fears and bringing out negativities, then our mind can become stronger through the process as well.
However, the positive side of stress will only happen if we allow ourselves enough time to rest to recover from such experiences.
Rest in relation to the body is about giving enough rest to the body and mind to recover. This is important. For instance if we do not give enough rest for our muscles to recover then the muscles will not grow and can become damaged.
Rest in relation to the mind is about being in a state of Stillness and Observation so that the Mind can unwind from a stimulating / confusing / disturbing experience. Without resting our mind after going through these kind of experiences, we will not be able to calm our minds and reflect back on our experiences to distil and absorb the wisdom from them.
This is when the Negative Side of Stress will happen. When we over-stress our body and mind, disease will result. When this happens, our body and mind will feel tired, which is a way of communicating to us that something needs to be addressed, i.e. we need to do less, that we need to rest more, that we need to let go of the stress within.
Thus to summarize, one can understand that stress can become destructive when we are experiencing it unintentionally. Because in such scenarios the stress will be happening in the background without our awareness which means that we will simply suffer without achieving any beneficial result. Without awareness of the stress happening in the back of our minds every day, the continuation of such stress can bring negative effects to one's physical and mental health.
And on the other hand, Stress can become constructive when we experience it with the intention to overcome it. On the journey of Self-Transformation, it is the intention which will determine the quality of the outcome. So to experience stress with the intention to grow and to overcome it will always bring about transformative results to the mind.
Importance Of Addressing Stress
It is important to become aware of just how much stress we are putting our body and mind through so that we know how much to balance it with rest.
Most of the time these stress can come from not only the things we do to ourselves but also from our environment i.e. our relationships, our environment, our living situation and so forth. For instance, stress can be created on our body when we do not allow our body to go out and absorb enough sunlight a day. And as a result this can lead health problems.
When we live our life over-working our body and mind without allowing enough rest we can also create detrimental effects on not only our body but also at the level of the mind – affecting greatly our levels of Happiness
In the beginning, we will have to develop awareness of the relationship between the body and mind. And on the journey of developing this awareness what we will realize that it can be so easy to fall into the belief that “we are not stressed.” But it is only when we learn how to relax and when we begin to experience a healthier state of mind, that we finally can realize that in the past we were actually stressing out – much like a person who never knew that that their ears are blocked until the blockage is cleared.
Thus when one live with a habit pattern of doing too much it can be difficult for one to be aware of that perhaps one is just doing too much.
Path Of Creator
Stress In Relation To The Path Of Creator
The journey begins with one developing Self-Awareness of whether or not they are stressed. This can be done through observing one's level of happiness level throughout the day and how it is affected by the amount of work one does.
The journey towards developing Self-Awareness can be accelerated through taking practices such as meditation which allows one to train their ability to be Self-Aware.
The destination is towards Greater Happiness.
A thing to note. The journey of creating happiness will require us to overcoming our fears and negativities. Thus the journey will be challenging, a journey where our old beliefs and old habit patterns are challenged.
Stress thus will be a part of the journey. Because as we venture into the dark parts of ourselves deeper fears and negativities will be brought out into light. Thus it can be a stressful path if one veers towards the extreme and dive deep into challenges without learning how to rest and take breaths in between the greater work.
Thus activities which promote Stillness is necessary if one wishes to accelerate their journey. Such activities can be the practice of meditation or yoga or basic things such as simply resting and having adequate refrain from stimulating activities.
Adequate Stillness is necessary for one to develop Greater Knowing of The Self. This is especially true for those who are willing to go into challenging experiences to bring out the inner fears and negativities to study them.
Without Stillness, one would simply react to the experiences and unable to simply observe and develop the Knowing Deeper. It is only by grounding oneself with Stillness that one can reach into higher experiences without toppling over.
So that is why developing Stillness is so important. Because without developing Stillness on the journey of Self-Transformation, one will simply react negatively to the negative experiences without ever understanding the cause of the negative reactions. Thus without stillness, one will simply experience stress without developing the Knowing of why it is there.
Develop Experienced Knowledge
Be aware of your energy levels and the degree of happiness you experience throughout the day. The more you do this the more you will realize what activities are stressful and in turn learn to calculate how much you are actually stressing your body and mind.
The Creator's Meditation / VipassanaLink here
Stress As Energy
When you feel a stress-ball of energy accumulating on the head, or a head ache, or physical stress on the head, it means that you are either working too hard or thinking too hard.
Working too hard can mean– Exciting the Mind too much i.e. Reacting and Reacting over and over again. Some examples are: when one excessively watches stimulating programes or it can happen when one is overly-worrying, thinking into the Future or when one dwells on a problem in the Mind and so forth.
A quick method of releasing the “energy knot” at the head is that when you meditate, simply apply breath in and breath out on the areas where the knots are and simply observe. I.e. not trying to relax the area physically but rather to accept the knot as it's there and try to be calm and cool as possible about it, to the point that you believe that you are Perfectly Fine with it.
Then slowly it should diminish , and as it does scan the surrounding areas for more knots, and then penetrating it even deeper to find the cause of the energy behind the energy (i.e. try to find subtler energies behind the gross energies.* This is easier practiced by those who are more sensitive to energy or those who have practiced the Creator's Meditation for a while. Using this technique the knots will start to disappear at the deeper level of the Mind and Body.