No doubt that when things don’t go according to plan in your life, you get stressed out. Stress is inevitable, but what if you could deal with it in a better way? Rory Vaden, author of Take the Stairs and a blogger at huffingtonpost.com, says you can and wants you to think of it like this: Whenever you are overwhelmed, upset, perturbed, or pissed, ask yourself this question: “Is this challenge of eternal significance?” Just asking the question can automatically enable you to relax. Problems start to disappear the moment you expand your perspective. If you have the discipline to ask yourself that question in those moments of frustration, you will always find that greater peace lies in longer-term perspective.
Vaden uses the example of getting a flat tire on your way to work. Not a great way to start your day, right? If someone asked you later that night how your day was, you’d probably tell that person about the flat tire and how you were stranded on the side of the road and late to work. It was a major event in your day. However, pretend you are on your deathbed 60 years from now and someone asked you how you felt about your life? Do you think you’d say, “Well, I had a pretty good life except for that day I had that flat tire?” No way. You probably wouldn't even remember the flat tire, Vaden says, because a flat tire is such a small event in relation to your overall life.
The big realization here, according to Vaden, is:
- A challenge in respect to today is a big problem.
- But a challenge in respect to our life is a small problem.
- And a challenge in respect to eternity is no problem.
So, why get stressed over little issues? Expand your perspective and you can quickly see how silly it is to let insignificant things create substantial stress in your life.