Inspiring Articles


Clear thinking - Pressure OF Power ON

When Are you feeling 'the heat'? It seems most of us feel pressure, or believe we are being 'pressured', at some time or other. The child feels the pressure of parents at exam time. The worker feels the pressure of the deadline. The athlete feels the pressure to perform and break records. And sometimes we feel the subtle pressure of the expectations of a partner. The list goes on and life can suddenly look like one long journey from one 'pressure point' to another.

And yet, in many ways, it is totally unnecessary to ever feel pressure. It is simply a feeling that we habitually create when we learn to believe that something 'bad' will happen if we don't achieve. For some it is a feeling they invoke when they believe a bit of pressure is at least OK, sometimes good and often essential. They believe they need the pressure to get the job done on time and thereby fulfil their own desires or the expectations of others. Unfortunately, over time, the habit of creating 'pressure feelings' becomes more frequent and more draining. If it doesn't burn us out, as it seems to do to an increasing number of people today, it will adversely affect our efficiency, our effectiveness and more importantly our 'happiness quotient'.

The first step to begin reducing both the quantity and the strength of your frequent 'pressure points' is one powerful insight into the truth about pressure. It's not the deadline or the expectations of others that creates your pressure feelings, it is always you. This is easy to see as we watch two people do the same work to the same deadline. One is always feeling 'the heat' as they are continuously tense and anxious, while the other is in 'cruise control' as the sail to deadline with ease. Both get the job done but each ones 'quality of life' along the way is very different. So all feelings of pressure are self-created. This is good news as it means you can do something about it, unless of course you are addicted to the feelings, which is the case for many, especially those of us who always leave things until the last minute! For the 'pressure addict' it's as if they have become dependent on being pressure motivated' which is the same as adrenaline motivated. So what exactly are you feeling when you feel pressure. What is your creation? What is your addiction? It is not difficult to see. It is fear. It may arise as tension or anxiety or worry or panic, or a mixture of all four, but they are all simply different faces of fear.

Switching the Pressure OFF:
The fist step in relieving the pressure feeling is to stop for a moment, push the pause button for a minute, to interrupt the feeling. The second step is to see that you are not only feeling the emotion of fear, you are creating it. The third step is to look at your thinking behind the emotion e.g. "I am going to miss the deadline … I may not be able to do what they expect me…I might not earn enough to meet the payments". The fourth step is to recognise that you need to change your thoughts from fear full and worrisome, to fear free and enthusiastic. But to do this you need to 'get at' and change the beliefs that are giving rise to the thoughts. So step five is to identify and eliminate the false beliefs that are shaping your fear filled pressure thinking. This process requires power. All change requires an input of energy. If we want to change the level of light in a room we either have to open the curtains and let more of the power of the sun to enter the room, or we have to find more power to make the light bulbs brighter. Unfortunately the power of the sun or electricity cannot help us change our pressure feelings. We need a deeper energy, a deeper power, sometimes referred to as the power of truth. Belief is not the truth. In fact the truth about most beliefs can usually be found in three letters in the middle of the world be lief itself. Most beliefs are lies.

It is the lies that live within your beliefs that are responsible for your pressure feelings and it's only when you flick the switch and turn on the power of truth that you can dissolve the pressure. Here are seven examples of how to switch the pressure OFF and turn the power ON

Turning the Power ON:
Pressure Point 1 - Deadlines : The belief that creates the pressure is something bad will happen if the task is not done on time . The truth that relieves the pressure is no one loses anything over one missed deadline or even if I did lose my job I can go and get another one.

Pressure Point 2 - Performance level : The belief that creates the pressure is I may fall short of the level of performance I have set for myself. The truth that relieves the pressure is I can only do my very best according to my capacity at this moment or if I don't hit that level this time I will be strengthened and able to learn from this attempt.

Pressure Point 3 - Financial Commitments : The belief that creates the pressure is I may not make/have enough money to meet my financial commitments. The truth that relieves the pressure is I can only pay with the money I have and if there isn't enough I will simply downsize my commitments.

Pressure Point 4 - The Future : The belief that creates the pressure is I am sure things will be worse next week/year. The truth that relieves the pressure is everything is always changing and there are always reasons for change and nothing gets worse, just different.

Pressure Point 5 - Expectations of Others : The belief that creates the pressure is I have to meet others expectations or I will lose their approval and therefore my self esteem will be affected. The truth that relieves the pressure is I don't 'have to' meet anyone's expectations (I can choose to) and I am not dependent on others approval for my self esteem

Pressure Point 6 - Personal Health : The belief that creates the pressure is my health seems to be getting worse and worse. The truth that relieves the pressure is all physical pain is simply weakness leaving my body and all mental/emotional suffering is a message saying there is something I need to change at the level of my thoughts and feelings (pressure feelings being a form of suffering).

Pressure Point 7 – Goals and Ambitions : The belief that creates the pressure is I have to achieve my goals in order to be happy and successful. The truth that relieves the pressure is I can be happy without needing to achieve any goal, in fact its only when I am happy that the achievement of any goal becomes worthwhile and easy.

The underlying belief that all pressure feelings have in common is I may lose something unless…..! And the truth that relieves the pressure in each case is therefore I have nothing to lose, because nothing is actually mine, even my body . But this may be too big a jump to make, especially if you are exploring this kind of belief/truth territory for the first time. So one step at a time means seeing the belief you are holding on to, seeing how it is behind your thoughts and pressure feelings. Then playing with the different truths, which are also just beliefs as they appear in words here. They only become the truth, and therefore only have the power to switch off your pressure feelings, when you realise them for yourself and hear yourself say, albeit in your thoughts, "Yes that is true, I get that, I see it now".

Question: Which three of the above pressure points do you experience most frequently. Write down the specifics .
Reflection: Reflect on each one and write down the underlying belief that you are holding on to in each case.
Action: Identify and articulate the truth that would relieve the pressure and use it this week to turn your pressure feelings OFF.

For a range of exercises, meditations and visualisations which help interrupt the 'pressure feelings' and begin to 'see' the truth visit www.just-a-minute.com

'Clear thinking - Pressure OF Power ON - 5/8/07 - BK Mike George - www.relax7.com