Stress-free life, anyone?

February 16, 2019

When I thought about this title for today’s column, I know what your answer will be. What stress-free life are you talking about? There is no such thing as this kind of life anymore. Thanks to our state-of-the-art communication which is our simple cellphones, it’s goodbye to stress-free life.

Let’s go back to a  few decades, say 30 to 40 years ago. Did many have cellphones already? Did our household helps, students, janitors, have free access to cellphones? So then, even if you are one of the early lucky ones to possess a portable phone, still you can also make limited calls to others, unlike today. 

Because at that time, very few had cellphones, not like now, when even street sweepers will stop their work to text or call someone. Or when your own house helps will be busy talking by cell to their boyfriends or families they left behind in provinces to work for you. 

And with unlimited access to so many people and even the news, with constant bombardment of what is going on to one’s family in the provinces and the like, wouldn’t you be stressed all the time? A friend of mine recently went on a retreat for three days. 

They were of course not allowed any cellphones even at night. To do this, the retreat participants were told to warn their relatives and friends that they would be out of touch for three days with no communication whatsoever. After the three days, my friend said that never had she felt so relaxed and peaceful. No one was bothering her. 

No one was texting her regarding the latest bad news, My friend found three days of silence and peace and never had she felt so relaxed and happy. I can  recommend to lessen our notifications (put them on mute) or remove irritating apps. But with such a technology right by our fingertips where just in a few seconds or minutes you can Facetime or Viber or Skype anyone anywhere in the world. 

Can you just imagine how small our world has indeed become? I remember facetiming my late brother abroad while he was in the ICU of a hospital. Can you imagine this happening 30 or even 40 years ago?

The reason why we are so stressed as well is because everything is moving so fast that in an instant you know what is happening in the other side of the world. And with those CCTVs all over the city, you can watch crimes being committed even real time. So, yes, welcome to a stressful life from hereon.