Let it Out


There is an article that is posted up the bulletin board in my office kitchen that says “Small Business Enemy #1: Stress.” I don’t know why I didn’t notice it before, but I just read it. The only thing I’d change is the title, so that it reads “Business Enemy #1: Stress.” Before leaving my old job to work for a small company, I worked at a very large company, where you can consider each department a “small business.”  Of course, the underlying similarity between me and my direct coworkers was our high stress levels. Half of my department was counting down the minutes to happy hour and the other half the minutes to just get home.

The article states that “modern social norms don’t allow us to act out in ways that our ancestors did to release built-up stress.” Did all of you have an image of cavemen screaming? I just did! But, if that’s what it takes, don’t go put on a cavemen suit but do go yell into a pillow if you have to. Sometimes it just feels better. Basically, what the researcher is saying is that stress triggers an increased need for physical activity due to the hormones released by stress. We end up suppressing or denying our stress because our environments are not conducive to relieving it. So, I think step one should be letting the stress out, rather than internalizing it.  Whether it’s venting, yelling into a pillow or walking it out, try to release your stress so that it won’t build up.

By the way, I just learned from this article that in 1992, the UN named stress the “20th Century Epidemic.” Let’s not allow this epidemic to take over our lives!


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