Dealing With Stress From A Symbolic Standpoint
What do you do when you’re stressed? For that matter, what does it MEAN when we are stressed??
I think these are vital questions. Why? Because the first thing we reach for when we are stressed is symbolic.
Consider what you crave, need, or lean on when you are out-of-your-mind with frustration….
Is it food? That might be symbolic of a need to digest your frustration. The belly is a fire-pit of soul…centeredness and churning. Food is a source of nourishment. Together, the stomach and food are symbolic of a need to process emotional stress that we have consumed.
Maybe it’s alcohol. If you’re fried to the max, and your instant response is grabbing a beer…that’s symbolic too. It’s a sign of the psyche needing to be recharged. Booze is an escape. It elevates (or sedates) our mind. If you tend towards alcohol to retreat from stress, I’m willing to bet it’s a symbolic signal towards mind-focused stress.
What about smoking? The lungs are about inspiration. They are kin to the air. Cells in our bodies convert oxygen into carbon dioxide. It is the lungs that remove that Co2 waste product from our bodies. They’re function is essential to our existence on this lovely planet, as Co2 is necessary for plant life. So, if you reach for a smoke the minute you’re on edge…that’s symbolic. It’s symbolic that you’re choking within your own anxiety. It’s also symbolic of a lack of inspiration. The whole thing about AIR revolves around elevation, lightness…and well…airiness!
So what do we do?
That’s up to you. Some of our knee-jerk responses to stress are habits formed over long spans of time. That’s something to be mindful of. If it’s a stress-relieving habit, it might take effort to consider other options.
I’m not writing this post to offer therapy for stress. I just wanted to point out that our go-to solutions are symbolic, and should be contemplated.
That said, I do have a few suggestions (of course, lol). Here they are…
Get In My Belly!: If you grab food when stressed, consider meditating instead. Think on the functions the stomach has. Imagine it churning and functioning without any additives. You can also imagine a fire-pit within your belly. Let it rage with an awesome blaze….and allow that blaze to burn all your stress away!
Booze Me Up Baby!: If alcohol is your stress reliever, consider water instead. Our bodies are made of over 87% water. It is cleansing. Purifying. Renewing. Down 16 ounces or more water in that moment when you’re at your wits end. It will refresh a lot better than a brew. Also – water purifies the mind. All water consumed flushes through our neuro fluids and kinda swooshes out the mental madness we have to deal with.
Light Em If You Got Em!: If smoking is your stress-stomper, consider going for a walk instead. I know it sounds lame compared to a smoke-stick…but it helps. Exercise of any kind fills the lungs. It gets us inspired and energized. It reminds us of our breath, our inhalations, and our life!
A few disclosing remarks about this article: PLEASE READ!
Firstly, you know I’m not dispensing medical advice, right? Yeah, I’m trained in medicine, but I’m no doctor, and I would never advise you to adjust your health on my word. Okay? Okay.
Secondly, If you beg for a burger, beckon a beer, or bum a smoke…that’s your right…and I’m not judging. Trust me. I have an epic addictive personality. No joke. You be you!
Lastly, there are some awesome go-to habits we can culminate that are great healing tools. Maybe some of you practice these habits already…but if you don’t…here are some tips:
I Will Hug You, Squeeze You, And I Will Call You George!: You remember that Warner Brothers cartoon with the abominable snowman? Poor soul just wanted love. I think a lot of times our stress is due to lack of love an attention. So if you can relate, grab a friend. Grab a dog. Grab a cat. Grab a loved one. Snuggle on that cuddly baby for as long as it takes to relax!
It’s all Zen!: The idea of Zen is all about everything and nothing suspended in a liminal space. If that makes no sense, then just consider being in the present moment. If you ponder it….we can do nothing about the past. The future has its own motives (meaning…we can plan, but the Universe might have Her own plans that may clash with ours).
The only truly profound potential we have is in the present moment. When stressed out, try to unplug future and past tense, and plug into the present moment. Reach into the infinite possibilities available in this very second. It’s a refreshing re-start button that trumps any panic button.
May all your moments be as peaceful as possible.
More Stress-Free Symbolic Meanings: