A death, severe pain in hip or back, and the anticipation is making my days feel longer than normal here in Guatemala - Where Is Andy Graham?
"Stressor: An event that creates a sense of threat by confronting a person with a demand or opportunity for change"
- Criminal Minds Fan Page
I have been watching the television show, "Criminal Minds," and learned a new way of understanding stress. In the show, the FBI detectives talk about "stressors" that triggered the "unsub," the unknown subject to begin a crime spree, normally some type of serial killing. An example of a stressor could be a divorce, and this would trigger a person to go on three month drinking binge, the divorce was the stressor that triggered the drinking. The television show Criminal Minds helped me to focus on the emotional stressors and try to incoporate them into my introspectional analysis of myself.
How I feel is primary, then how you feel is secondary goal in life?
When I hear a friend say, "I need to work," I often ask myself, is this the way the person is avoiding his or her feelings? I said the other day to a friend,
"I do not have or want a dog, dogs are for people who cannot love people."
I suppose there are many prioritie in life or questions, can I love you, and can I love myself. Then using this construct, it would be a derivative to say, it is my primary priority to care how I feel, then you.
I am up to my ears with small stressors, however they are accumulating which triggers a desire for a geographical cure. I want to go the USA, there is this back of my hope that all will change, or more acurrately, I will forget all my stresses and focus on something more interesting.
The worst day for a traveler is the day they buy a plane ticket.
Today is September 27, 2011, I purchased a plane ticket on September 14, therefore all I have been thinking about for the last couple of weeks is leaving Panajachel, Guatemala and going to the USA to visit my parents. My friend James here in Pana asked,
"What are you doing today?"
"I am already in the USA mentally, I have no plans in Pana."
The long and short, and the middle of this situation is there are many changes in my life and I do not like change. I like excitement, I enjoy danger, but in way I do not like change, maybe because there are deadlines.
Contrary to some imagined belief about my life, yes it is adventuresome, but generally my days are slow and very predictictable. In a way, the biggest challenge I face daily is keeping busy enough to not be bored. I do not report to a job, I do not have meetings, there is almost no require duties in my life, to say the words, "I am busy." would be rediculous, the last thing in my day is busy, I spend my whole day occupying my time with somethings to do.
A friend ask my advice about his job, I told him he was crazy.
I am not busy, and seldom do I meet an expatriate living abroad who is truly needing to be doing something. Yes, there are an incredible high concentration of crazy Americans in Pana saying, "I am busy," but in reality they are just certifialbly crazy, not busy, they have failed to adapt to living in Paradise.
Just a week or so ago, a friend from the USA while talking on Skype.com asked me about his job, and how to negotiate working 40-50 hours a week with his boss. I thought about it, and finally said,
"I would never work 40-50 hours in the USA."
"I know there is another lifestyle, therefore anyone doing that behavior is crazy to me, there is no way for me to give you advice, my advice is to quit."
There are situational changes in my life.
1. Boredom, I am really bored with Pana, it is beautiful, the climate is perfect, however there are too many people talking about strange shit. For example, there is a person learning how to give accupuncture to dogs here. Then another person was wanting to translate a book on dowsing from English into Spanish. This is when you take a v shaped stick and find water. In a way it is interesting, but after awhile I long for people like my parents who talk about food and the weather.
2. Dale W. Marsh, a man of 75 died last week, and I coordinated the funeral, the local Guatemala population was respectful, while the expatriates were generally avoiding. Expatratriates, missonaries, and NGO types are some of the most selfish people on the planet, they bridge on being socialpaths.
3. Unresolve pain in my hip, back or somewhere --- I am having accute pain my hip bone, my leg, my lower leg, I cannot figure out exactly how to stop it, and Ibuprofen dulls it, but sitting is a huge problem. I want to solve this, being on a plane to India for 20 hours would be torture. After I leave the USA, I will go to India.
4. Plane Ticket - I purchased a plane ticket, it difficul to not think about the future.
5. The idea of pain for the rest of my life caused by this hip or back problem is not a pleasant thought.
Every person handles stress or stressors.
There are people who say they cannot handle stress, well, in reality all people handle stress, some do it well, and others badly.
Stress Define: Stress is a term in psychology and biology, borrowed from physics and engineering and first used in the biological context in the 1930s, which has in more recent decades become commonly used in popular parlance. It refers to the consequence of the failure of an organism — human or other animal — to respond adequately to mental, emotional, or physical demands, whether actual or imagined.
Signs of stress may be cognitive, emotional, physical, or behavioral. Signs include poor judgment, a general negative outlook, excessive worrying, moodiness, irritability, agitation, inability to relax, feeling lonely, isolated or depressed, acne, aches and pains, diarrhea or constipation, nausea, dizziness, chest pain, rapid heartbeat, eating too much or not enough, sleeping too much or not enough, social withdrawal, procrastination or neglect of responsibilities, increased alcohol, nicotine or drug consumption, and nervous habits such as pacing about, nail-biting, and neck pains.
Im feeling the same way in Ghana. I have enjoyed myself here, but I should have left 2 months ago. Im keeping my visits to 3 months. If I'm not settled by then I wont be...Looking forward to being stateside for a month with family and than heading south to Mexico, Belize and beyond....
It's funny - I find that after about 3 months, I get itchy feet. But when I buy a plane ticket, I get all melancholy - the trip is suddenly over in your head, even though departure may be weeks away.
Conversely, after 5 months in Canada, I'm very much looking forward to my flight to Guatemala on Nov 8. But I'm not looking forward to dealing with all the conspiracy theorists, crystal worshipers and dippy hippies. Alas, nowhere is perfect. Maybe that is the motivation to keep travelling...
Stressors are all about the meaning a person gives to a thing. Anything can be viewed as a stressor if the meaning we give to it, is that it is detracting in some way from our quality of life. The same thing can be much less of a stressor if it is viewed as something which teaches us something.
Back and hip pain however is debilitating and exhausting. I would recommend the book Healing back Pain by John E Sarno MD. It cured a pain I had in the base of my spine, even though the bone had degenerated there, according to an MRI.
Victor Frankl Man's Search for Meaning is another eye opener.
Stressors are just a barometer of how well we deal with our thoughts, and the meanings we apply to life events.If you really want to get well and free from pain follow the advice of Dr Richard Schulze. He is out spoken, anti-pharmaceutics, and has been struck off the medical register, but the man's advice, for claiming to cure incurable diseases, if you can go through with his 30 course, works. its simple. Thoroughly cleanse the body, and feed it really good foods, and keep it calm, it will heal itself.