The news report out this week states that more and more people are suffering form stress related illnesses, caused by what leading GP’s are saying are the results of the economic downturn having a negative effect, to the point that people are still working when they are ill, working longer hours and not taking lunch breaks in order to earn more money to combat the financial difficulties they are facing…..
As i have said on this blog before that there is a worrying fact that suicide is one of the highest killers of young men in the UK, the figures have been dropping See Here but i personally cannot see how these figures are going to stay heading in this direction, with all pressure that people are increasing under in the current financial climate.
I think it is interesting for men in particular, as coping with stress can actually be a great motivator. When i was talking about this recently most of the guys i spoke to said that they need a certain level of stress in order to thrive in business or work or sport. But the difference comes when life is already being lived at a stretch and then something else comes in on top of it and then something else that is out of your control. Stress can quickly turn to depression and the downward spiral looks like it will never stop.
One lad said to me that when this happens to him he holds on for as long as he can knowing that at some point he is probably just going to snap, when i asked about seeking help he said, “When you go down that route you might as well chuck everything you have worked for down the drain, house, car keys, work the lot, because as soon as you are labelled no one will want to touch you!…”
As sad as it was to hear i do think that he has a very valid point as much as we like to think that we live in a tolerant society there is still a lot of stigma attached to mental health and or depression.
So this then leaves us with a question, can stress and depression be avoided?
Personally i don’t think it always can but i do think that there are ways in which we save ourselves a lot of unwanted hassle, for me my faith is a leveller, i find in Christ a man who daily faced stressful situations and who met them head on, mainly because he had spent time in silence and solitude before hand, he had talked things through with God, which allowed him a clear mind and quick wit to cope with what ever was thrown at him.
Here is what he said “Are you tired? Worn out? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep
company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.”
And over time many have sort to live in a way that allows one to see the rhythms of life moving from busy to still fast to slow rest to work. here is a favourite community of mine Northumbria community
take a look at there prayers and liturgy i find it stills the soul ….