Chapter 22: “Life Isn’t an Emergency”


Winter never ends

Winter is a time to rest and restore, for Springtime will be here soon enough.

Life isn’t an emergency, but there are emergencies in life and we need to differenciate between the two. I’ve come to the realization that I’m not a blogger, at least not in the true sense of the word. I am a hobby-blogger and yes, I just made that up. I don’t blog daily and I don’t blog for money. If I did, I wouldn’t have a crumb to eat in the house. So what is a hobby-blogger? A hobby-blogger is a person who has spurts of  inspiration, but not a desire to do the necessary work of a professional blogger. A hobby-blogger likes to write and share information, comment on other blogs and in general blogs as the spirit moves her. Thus, my one month hiatus from blogging. As I look back at my 2 plus year history in blogging, I have seen an ebb and flow and I have watched the tide come and go…

Life isn’t an emergency and neither is my writing or blogging. I don’t approach it in that manner. I approach it as an enjoyable pastime not a job. So this particular chapter is apropo for me and the timing is perfect! Remember the “In Basket” from Chapter 6? (No, well go back and re- read it.) My in basket will always be full, but it’s my out basket that is more important to me. What am I taking out and sharing and what part of myself am I giving to others? That’s what is important, and more importantly, that is what’s rewarding!

Our author points out that “We take our own goals so seriously that we forget to have FUN along the way, and we forget to cut ourselves some slack.”


 adjective \ˈslak\

: not stretched or held in a tight position

: not busy : lacking the expected or desired activity

: doing something poorly because you are not putting enough care or effort into it.

I have my own deffinition: slack/verb.  CUTTING ONESELF A BREAK!

I’m not slacking off, but mearly allowing an adjustment in my approach to life and my priorities. I’ve taken myself off the clock and redefined my goals. I hope I’m not #3 in the above deffinition according to Webster.

Only 22 chapters into our adventure together and I realized that the urgency or emergency of weekly blogging, posting on Facebook and constant Twitter-ing was adding pressure to my days and creating a no fun atmosphere.

Me: “Dr. I’m so stressed. I spend hours online keeping up with all the social media. Then I have to rush through my mail, my  bookwork, housework, together time with my spouse and kids. I’ve lost track of my friends from church and I feel guilty and miserable about almost everything. I just feel that my life is out of control!”

Dr.: “So Barbara, why do you allow these things to take priority in your life?”

Me: Pause and sigh…”I, I don’t know. I thought that I was staying young, keeping up and increasing my skills.” I suppose that I think that it’s important to do it all.” “Am I wrong?” Sigh...

Dr.: “Are you?” (Damn Dr.’s, always turning their questions back to you to search for the answers!) “I guess I’m not wrong, but maybe just going in the wrong direction.” “For me that is.” “I shouldn’t compare myself to others, and then feel like a failure”. “A tired, stressed out failure…”

Dr.: “Precisely!”

Me: “That’s it?” “You are agreeing with me?” “You don’t have anyhing else to offer?”

Dr.: “Barbara, you have so clearly stated what’s wrong, and you have prescribed the solution to your problem.” “Life isn’t an emergency.” “Your life is how you make it.” “Create your emergencies, or create your joy.” “It’s up to you!”

Me: Sigh of relief…“I guess all I had to do was give myself permission to slack.” “Give myself permission to enjoy my hobby-blogging?”

Dr.: “Go for it, and make good memories along the way!”

Well, there you have it. Life isn’t an emergency after all…



I might be back next week, or maybe not. I might be banging on my congas or learning a new song to play. I might bake those fattening cookies, stay in my jammies or pull something else off my back burner. It’s my choice and it’s your’s too!




  1. It’s been a while since I have written anytning on this blog. Perhaps it’s a good thing. I still read a chapter a week and sometimes sneak a peek at the following chapter.

    I have used this time, though unintended, to reflect on the chapters I have read. It seems at looking back that I have indeed put some of the practices of getting rid of stress, in action.

    I seem to have more tolerance of others’ faults. I’ve come to realize that I too have faults and should not dwell on those of friends, relative’s etc.

    My listening skills have increased. There was a time I would ask someone a question and want them to hurry up and finish their sentence so I could elaborate on the question. I would ask them a question of about their health, their recent trip or inquire abouit their family. I could not wait until I could tell them of my health or my family. Why did I ask them anyway?Actually I guess I was more interested in my response than theirs. This habit of mine did not just happen. I think I’ve always been more interested in my stories than other’s. As I gradually started practicing listening……Wow! Others do have something to say and they wanted me to listen.

    About six months ago while working out at a local gym I noticed a very heavy lady. She was certainly not someone who I would normally be even remotely interested in. A few months went by and I noticed her and the fact that she had lost lots of weght. I complimented her and kept walking. A few weeks later I noticed that she had lost even more weight.I gave her a compliment but still did not stop and listen to her story of how she lost all of her weight.

    When I saw her in the locker room I asked her her name. She opened up to me that she had lost a total of 135 pounds. She was a diabetic and since her weight loss her numbers were awsome. She told me she had a medical proceedure to remove quite a bit of belly fat. She had also quit smoking. She was so proud of her self. She was doing this for her own health , not for anyone else. She told me I was the only one who had complimened her. She is 55 years old and thought she was too old to do anything about her body.

    The point I am trying to make is that this lady was someone who was doing her thing and no one even noticed her or talked to her. I was a better person after listenting to her plight of losing weigh and regaining self-confidence. I thought, I wonder how many people I have just given a quict “hi” and went on my way not saying a word. Maybe just one of those wanted to talk or have some type of conversation

    Now I am more aware of those around me. My personal thoughts or worries may be minor compared to others.

    It may be a while before I write anytning but remember I am “processing” and will keep in touch.

  2. StressLess says:


    Your comment is both heartfelt and heart”melt” for me. By the time I got to the end of your encounter with the lady at the gym, I realized that I too am guilty of not acknowleging those right before my own eyes; not taking the time to engage all my senses and take interest in more than what is on my mind. I only hope that through this journey, that I can do better!

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  4. You are so interesting! I don’t think I’ve read anything like this before.
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    • StressLess says:

      Welcome to the Adventure! I hope that you continue to participate (at your leisure) and use the strategies we read and practice, to help you achieve the peace and the stressed less life that you desire. This has been a unique process for me and I’m always happy to hear from those who have joined in! Feel free to comment as you wish. I look forward to your insight!

      Stress less,


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