1 of 8 Girl dances at water's edge on Morro Strand State Beach


Have you felt stress in your life lately? Well, you’re not alone. According a 2012 study by the American Psychological Association, seven in 10 Americans feel the impact of stress on their lives. Many of the people in the study experienced feelings of anger, irritability, fatigue and changes in their sleep patterns. The study also found that the current American health system is inadequate when it comes to helping people manage stress and when it comes to teaching them appropriate coping mechanisms.


So, where does stress come from? According to WebMD, every person has different stress triggers and the sources of stress can be personal or related to social and job issues. Common personal sources of stress include: health problems, especially chronic illnesses such as heart disease or arthritis; emotional problems, such as anger issues, depression and low self-esteem; and major changes in your life. Social and job issues such as a low-level of job satisfaction, unemployment and not having enough money to cover all your expenses too are a cause of stress. WebMD also states that people’s stress levels differ according to their personality types. Some people constantly worry about the sources of their stress, while others see them as minor hindrances in their lives.


Sadhguru talks about ways to effectively address stress quite regularly at his live conferences as well as on the Inner Engineering course. Below is an excerpt from one of Sadhguru’s talks where he addresses the source of stress and how we can overcome it:


“Many years ago when I first went to United States wherever I went people were talking about stress management. I could not understand this. Why would anybody want to manage stress? Because I always believed people managed things which are precious to them¸ which are valuable to them. You manage your money; you manage your business, your family, your property; why would you manage stress? Somewhere we have come to a conclusion that there is no other way to live, so we have to manage it.”


“So what is this stress? Stress is not because of the nature of your work. If people have…Today afternoon I was meeting a journalist and she said, ‘If I have nothing to do I will become very stressful,’ and I think that’s true with lots of people. If they have something to do they are stressful, if they have nothing to do they are stressful. So obviously it’s not about the work, anyway they are stressful, isn’t it? So stress is not about what you’re doing and what you’re not doing; stress is just your inability to manage your body, your mind and your emotions. You don’t know how to keep your body; you don’t know how to keep your mind nor your emotions.”


“Stress is a certain level of unpleasantness that you create in your mind. Why do you create this unpleasantness? Is that your choice? Definitely not. Simply because your mind doesn’t do what you want it to do, it is doing its own things. It’s just like, right now I’m using this microphone, it’s a very useful instrument; it’s amplifying everything that I say. Suppose it started saying its own things; then I better not be here. So an instrument that does not take instructions from you is more of a nuisance than of use. Right now that is how most people’s minds are, it doesn’t take much instructions, it is doing its own thing. Nobody would consciously create any unpleasantness within himself. Unpleasantness is happening because much of it is unconscious, so unpleasantness is happening. If mind was taking instructions from you 100% I am sure you would have kept yourself utterly blissful every moment of your life, there’s no question about that. So instead of seeing how to take these instruments into our control, this body, this mind, this emotion and the energy behind it, if you take charge of these things there will be no such thing as stress.”


Now that you have a better understanding of the sources of stress, how will you incorporate the methods shared above into your life? Tell us in the comments!

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  1. Sandra Larson Reply
    Well, since I was injured, I can't work anymore, so not having the income I used to have is stress in it all by it self. Living with a permanent injury, was stressful. I've learned to live with it. Life as I knew it all changed due to an injury. Then having to live in a mother's home at age 51, boy, that is stressful. The environment, it feels so negative also. I don't want anyone to feel sorry for me, but it would be nice if a little bit of compassion was there at home, I feel like I'm a burden just by being here due to my injury. I do for myself, no one has to do things for me. I just take a little longer in doing things... what's wrong with that? I'm a private person, and I also don't like my business being discussed among other family members either. I really ENJOY being by myself except for when my son visits. We have a wonderful relationship, my son is my bundle of joy every time I see him. I always laugh. So I truly enjoy his company. Normally I'm kind of like a happy child but in an adult type of way. Often I sit to myself and get the giggles and laugh. So when I'm surrounded by a negative person(s), it throws me off balance. I'm in a situation that I can't move out of just yet, so I just have to suck it up til the time comes that I can move. Everyone just needs their own 4 walls to live in, especially in this family. So when that times comes for me that I can move, it will be a much better situation. The article is very true though, I get what Sadhguru is saying. It's so true, I have to just manage my inner self better also so that if a negative person is around me, that it doesn't drag me down or put me off balance. Sometimes things happens, and I just was unfortunate to get injured, and I'm dealing with it the best way I can for the moment. In the near future, I will do the inner engineering when possible. I just can't do it at the moment, although I really need to for better well being and health.
  2. Dr. Schavi M. Ali, Ph.D. Reply
    Stress is an unfortunate structure of western life. However, it can be eradicated with proper lifestyle changes such as meditation and staying away from situations that can induce emotional anxiety which leads to fearful thoughts and potential physical health challenges. Having the guidance of Sadghuru at this time of profound changes in our world is a true blessing. Inner Engineering seems to be the next step in spiritual science.

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