It’s a busy month, right? Compressed schedules, more work, fighting crowds, finding a place to park. The feeling of hurry and anxiety creep in and we move from a moment of stress to a model of stress.
We begin to show signs of fatigue. We are easily frustrated, we have no balance and we can’t seem to find a moment to breathe. It’s in this season, this month, this moment. we need to move from “Distress to De-stress.” Here are five steps to make that happen and put an end to seasonal stress.
1. Side Step
Side step your normal busyness and hurried routine throughout the day for a few minutes. Get “out of the flow” of hurry. Find that place of quiet for a few moments. Maybe your car or in the corner of a room so you can remove yourself from hurry and be alone. “After Jesus fed the five thousand He left to be alone.” Matthew 14:21NLT
2. Sit Still
Sit still for a few moments. Mary and I did this activity for a session we were teaching last month on what happens when we sit still. We had the entire group sit still for three minutes and then asked for some feedback on how they felt to sit still for three minutes.
Most people said they felt anxious and tense BUT after a minute or so they began to relax. Some wanted more time! Sit still in silent solitude for a few moments to catch your mental and emotional breath. “Be still, and know that I am God.” Psalm 46:10a NLT
3. Shift Scenes
Shift your physical, mental and emotional scene from “I have to do it all and get it all done” to “God is God and I’m not.” Remember, you don’t have to do it all. Remember you don’t have to change the world. There was only one man that came to change the world and you just work for Him.
4. Stop Spinning
I remember my biology class in high school. At the beginning of the year each group was assigned a project. Our particular project was observing the life stages of the silk worm. We fed them a steady diet of mulberry leaves and provided the right environment for them to grow.
They ate, grew and eventually spun a cocoon. It took about three days of non-stop spinning to finish their cocoons. Once the cocoon was finished the silkworm stopped spinning and started the process of transformation. The time spent in the cocoons was about three weeks for each moth.
I am reminded that this worm, this moth, void of any real intelligence actually takes a break after an intense period of “spinning” and it’s during this break that they experience transformation. Reminder for us? “Don't copy the behavior and customs of this world (season), but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think.: Romans 12:2a NLT
5. Soak Spiritually
While checking into a hotel a while back the gentleman helping us with our bags was talking with us. He was a believer and shared with us that he and his wife “soak.” I thought I misunderstood his comment. I was hoping I misunderstood his comment. As it turns out I just missed a word or two. “Soak?,” I asked. He said, “Yes, we soak spiritually.”
I never heard the word soak used that way and as uncomfortable as I felt I asked him what that meant. He just told me they sit quietly together with the Lord and “soak” in His presence. A combination of a quiet moment, still soul and purposeful waiting while being saturated with God’s presence and peace.
As busyness increases over the next few days and the pressures of life reveal themselves in distressing situation and feelings remind yourself to “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7 NASB
What brings you peace during this season?
Which one of the five steps is most practical for you?
Photo Credit: shutterstock.com Image ID: 85359982 Copyright: Maridav