Avoidance Paying the price for security BY: Troy Murphy | May 2015
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During my first semester of college, I fell behind in a few classes; poor time management was the culprit. Accumulating assignments overwhelmed an already heavy load. Living on my own, trying to earn enough money to survive, I experienced the anxiety of survival for the first time. The psychological load outmatched my resources; too proud to seek help, I dropped most of my classes. My decision to withdraw was immediately rewarded with relief. I experienced comfort by giving-up.
By giving-up, we conserve mental energy, relieving anxiety; defeat is deceivingly soothing. Quitting and moving on is not always wrong, sometimes we need space to heal, instead of working until we collapse. But quitting has a cost. We gain relief as a trade-off for accomplishment.
For me, a few extra weeks of work would have prevented retaking mandatory classes. Always retreating, gaining temporary relief quickly becomes a habit, when better futures require a little grit in the face of demands. Stress is uncomfortable. Stress heightens as we extend beyond comfort zones. Achievement waits beyond the valleys of stress.
Stress is good; too much stress is bad.
Improved futures require we perform with moderate stress. Realizing the connection between stress and achievements, we bolster our resolve and march forward into the shadowy unknown, maintaining composure and doing what we must do.
Scrutinize your impulses to escape the roughness. These pulsing desires can be destructive. Whether we simply give, shoot up, or run away, we create devastating habits that promise a life of pain. Evaluate the short and long term costs of escape before making the impactful decision. We must dodge the ego and accept responsibility, honestly examining past choices, unveiling the nasty patterns. Sadly, without insight, we will continue to flee opportunity when it is package with stress, never achieving our intentions.
Managing stress is a skill, requiring more than grappling with pain and powering through it. We use tools to assist, soothing anxiety and giving hope. The tools shouldn’t be a surprise—meditation, exercise, healthy eating, rest and supportive friends. As we mindfully examine our lives, discovering avoidance and learn better skills to address the stress, we will seize opportunities instead of avoiding them.
Pull up your big boy and girl britches and courageously move toward the life you desire.