Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Dealing With Stress

Jimmy Connors scuffling.
I don't have the best coping skills.  When another person attacks me on a personal level, I have difficulty recovering.  My stress levels are off the charts right now because I'm in the middle of a relocation.  My to do list is massive.  Others in my circumstances might choose drinking, gambling, or other harmful activities in order to take their minds off the challenges they face.  I choose to write.

In high school, tennis was my coping mechanism.  It was a great way to have an outlet for my anger.  That fuzzy tennis ball got a daily four hour long beating.  The ball got thrashed but my sanity remained intact.

There are people close to me who don't understand me.  They ridicule me.  They offer to "intervene" so I can be saved before I fall off the cliff.  The irony of it all is in the solution I found to deal with stress.  Just like AA or overeater's anonymous, I created a gathering place for people who can't stop writing, a cyber-space place for people to share their addiction.  Every Friday, other guests who are more chronic in their addiction share their passion.  The meeting place, Caveman Reflections Cyber-bistro, is a light house beckoning others who seek refuge from a world that doesn't understand why they are obsessive compulsive writers.  Some visitors remain anonymous while others publicly admit they are destined to write every day no matter their circumstances.

Is there a cure for someone like me?  I do believe if I were to stop pursuing my life's passion, it would be like asking my heart to stop beating.  The self-imposed writing restrictions from 5:00AM to 8:08AM are a reasonable compromise.  I remember the story about Jimmy Connors when he first held a tennis racket at the age of two.  His grandmother removed him from the tennis courts every day after his short play time.  Young Jimmy was always kicking, screaming and scuffling, refusing to leave.  His desire to play tennis consumed him and he couldn't wait to be back on the courts the next day.  At 8:08 every morning, my court time is over for the day.  I promise there will be no kicking or screaming.   No intervention is needed.   I think I found a way to deal with my stress.  How do you manage stress?  Leave your comments below.

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