As human beings, we are extremely adaptive, sometimes to our own detriment.
See that woman in the picture? Yes, that used to be me. If you'd asked how I was doing, I would have said (perhaps a little too vehemently), "I'm fine!"
Obviously, I was not fine. But it didn't feel like I was lying when I said I was. I had just gotten so used to feeling a constant state of stress, that I thought it was normal.
This effect is especially likely when the stress adds up a little at a time. When a new event occurs, I evaluate it on its own, and then figure since it's such a small thing, it can't possibly bother me. So therefore I must be okay.
This is why it's so important to periodically Assess the Stress, to make sure that we're really and truly okay. And if we're not, let's face the truth and deal with it.
"Actually, I'm a lot of things."
A new friend asked me the other day how I was doing. He then clarified that he wasn't asking in the usual vague way, expecting the answer of "fine." He really wanted to know.
So I told him that I was excited about what was unfolding in my life, that I was feeling a fair amount of stress, that I was feeling healthier overall, and that I had just bruised my knees earlier that day after tripping over a pair of shoes.
Giving him that complete answer was extremely liberating. It felt so authentic.
Thanks to my friend for asking me, and for really wanting to know!
© 2015 Dr. Kristin Rose