the Empress of Stress

Happy Wednesday, Sugar Shells!

Last week I mentioned why I affectionately and humbly refer to myself as The Empress of Stress. (If you missed that letter, here's the link.)

I also made the bold claim that "I know how to skip the stress in the first place."  Which is actually true.  I stand by that, and I'll add that I derive much meaning and pleasure from teaching my beloved private clients how to sidestep stress in their own lives. 

This is advanced sorcery, however.  


Where we begin is learning to recognize and KNOW that we're stressed.  This sounds easy, indeed, and somehow it's simply not.  Practically every single client I've ever coached has needed this skill, just like I did. 

AND:  I'll add that I'm frequently confronted in my own life by the significant difference between knowing (as in, I know I'm stressed) and doing.

Last night, for example, I spent a few hours binge-watching sitcoms, picturing each item on my to-do list, and
 snarfling half a chocolate bar.  If you're not sensing any delight here, that's because there wasn't any.  I chose to get neck-deep in avoidance and indulge my standard decoy behaviors that help me temporarily deny the knowledge that I'm stressed.  

Notice that I chose.  

In other words, last night I did KNOW that I was stressed.  I just didn't feel like DOING the things I know how to do to ease it.  I wanted to ostrich, and that was okay.

So yes, despite appearances, I am a life coach who teaches skills and builds heart-muscles.  And perhaps my ostrich-ing means that I am lame.  Or perhaps my relationship with stress is complicated, nuanced, and ongoing (even though officially we broke up) because chocolate incidents like last night's give me another chance to study 
that instructive gap between knowing and doing.

What did I learn, you ask?  Mainly this: 
avoidance no longer feels delicious when awareness doesn't have an off button...so it may be worth DOING the stress-skipping things even when I have a headache.  Hmmm.

Much, much love,
Julie

P.S.  A warm welcome to all you new folks - thanks for joining us here!  It's an honor to be in your inbox.  

P.P.S.  Normally things are not so serious around here...see this, this, and this for proof.  Next week *might* finally be...The Uber Special Niece Edition (!!!) in which I shamelessly parade my luck to be her aunty.