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Stress and the Personal Conflict

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Stress and the Personal Conflict

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Personal conflict. Certainly one of the ripest recipes for stress ever to have come down the pike. Specifically, it's when you want two things that appear to conflict with one another.

Often, the conflict is not recognized. It's hardly ever resolved. The result is that you fluctuate back and forth between one thing and the next, never generating the satisfaction you're looking for on either end. And it absolutely drives you crazy.


Because at some level, you know better.

  • You know better than to think you can have the pay increase that comes with a promotion without having to accept greater responsibility.
  • You know better than to think you can spend every evening hanging out in the bar with your friends and also bank the additional income from having worked overtime.
  • You know better than to think you can eat burger-and-fry lunches every day and still lose those last ten pounds.

You know better, and yet you still try to cheat reality. Each person does this in a unique way, of course. One person might turn down the promotion and then complain they don't earn enough, while his friend could accept the promotion and let the responsibility lie fallow. Either solution causes stress.

When you believe you should act in one way and instead do something else, you create a huge internal conflict. The result is a compromise of your honor and integrity, high stress levels, and ultimately a compromise to your health.

The simple solution may be obvious: Determine what you believe in and act in accordance with your beliefs. Of course despite the simplicity of the idea, it can be tricky to do. How many of us can really state with conviction exactly what we believe in? Probably not many.

There's a lot of value to be found in articulating your personal commitments, especially at a stage of life where you're going through some kind of major transition: job issues, retirement issues, kid issues, relationship issues, parent issues. Basically anything that causes you to step out for a moment and reflect on where your life might be headed next.

  • Who are you and what do you stand for?
  • What commitments did you incur simply by being born – as part of your birthright? (For example, the commitment to protect yourself from harm.)
  • How does your current lifestyle support or conflict with the commitments you hold dear?

For most of us, it's well worth the time to do a periodic review of these things every so often, much in the same way that a corporation takes on a long-range planning process. Just to sweep the cobwebs out of the corners. Once you do, you’ll notice something grand. Resolving personal conflicts becomes a lot easier!

Healthy living expert Elizabeth Eckert encourages people to banish energy-zapping life stress by tuning in to inner guidance. Find the hidden stress in your life and learn strategies to resolve it at its source in the audio/e-book Stress In The Background: How to Thrive in a High Stress World.


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