Anxiety & stress – bane of modern living
The gap between expectations and reality is where stress resides.
Psychologists are now accepting this fact, which the old and wise have passed on to generations upon generations. The perks of modern lifestyle are many, but so are the perils.
Worryingly, stress has gripped many of us – young and old – and few are able to realize its ill-effects on health until its too late.
Young people are stressed about perception from peers. Ambitious students, in pursuit of academic excellence and career opportunities, are worried about getting accepted in a college of their choice in top overseas study destinations. They are anxious about career opportunities, especially if they have completed their studies in countries such as U.S., Canada, Australia, U.K., etc.
Their parents are vexed about repaying student loan, if their ward is in a safe environment and is living in appropriate student accommodation.
It does not stop there.
Society compelling to follow its norms, ever-increasing cost of healthcare, unreasonable people to be around, difficult boss and colleagues to be with, an intense desire to travel and to indulge without enough means to do so, unrealistic expectations – the modern man and woman, age notwithstanding, is pervaded by pressure from all sides.
This undercurrent of stress can quickly slip, and it often does, into a major mental healthcare problem. Unfortunately, talking about it is a taboo even today.
Acceptance and efforts. These two words symbolize the solution to a fulfilled and stress-free life, acknowledged by both, age-old wisdom and modern science.
Accepting that low score while pursuing Masters or PhD is not the end of academics, another attempt can be made for a better result. Realizing that informed decision & appropriate measures, and not worry, will repay the student loan.
A person can only change himself / herself, not others. Accepting this fact helps in develop empathy and understanding of reasons behind someone’s unreasonable behavior – be it boss, colleagues or a random person one may share a train or a cab ride with.
Expecting others to suit our convenience and comfort is foolhardy. So is expecting to live by society’s rules or falling into the trap of peer pressure. “Oh, they have a lavish 4 BHK, we should at least have a 3BHK”. “A sedan must be matched with a 4-wheel drive”. “Latest iPhone for a latest iPhone”.
One upmanship does no one good, ever. Accept that others may have means, or not, to indulge and splurge. Do we? Is there a gap between expectation and reality?
The desperation to fill that gap is an invitation to stress. And then the dominos fall, one after the other.