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A Little Back Rub by Dr. Juan Harrison

A Little Back Rub by Dr. Juan Harrison
  • PublishedFebruary 21, 2024

A Little Back Rub

I can usually tell when my wife’s emotional basket is about full or running over.  She may ask for a shoulder or back massage.  As she gears her school up for another year, she continues to help meet her father’s daily needs as he recovers from surgery.  Add in preparing for a Sunday school class party for the ladies, going on a multi-day trip as a babysitter with the kids to San Antonio, and you’ve got a pretty full plate.

What I’ve tried to get her to do over the years is to eat the elephant one bite at a time.  When we roll all these stressors into one big ball, it can come rolling right back over you.  When you can break up your to-do list and focus on one obligation at a time, it seems a lot more manageable.  Sometimes it’s simply setting priorities and deciding which things to tackle immediately, and which things could wait a bit.

Sometimes we do it to ourselves by over scheduling things when we could have said no or just moved or delayed an event or activity that wasn’t as necessary or important.  You have to watch the feeling that you’re Wonder Woman or Super Girl and can get it all done like Samantha on Bewitched with a wiggle of her nose.

Part of the problem, as the shoulders tense up and the headaches begin, is the feeling of disappointment that we may feel when we’re not able to handle everything as capably and efficiently as we assumed we would.  Women are so adept at keeping all the balls in the air without dropping one.  Scientists tell us we can only effectively focus on one thing at a time.  Maybe that explains me dumping my coke into my lap as I’m trying to talk on my phone while I’m driving.

It’s easier said than done.  Human nature tells us we can handle one more project, one more problem.  It just forgets to tell us that it may come along with some teeth grinding and maybe rolling tummy.  Things tend to pile up on us when we are being reactive rather than proactive.  If we procrastinate, we tend to feel almost like a victim; when we move into action mode, the feeling of helplessness tends to go away as we make progress on completing the task.

The final thing is looking ahead.  Imagine the time when each task is finally completed.  When you can envision an end in sight, you’re less likely to want to give up in frustration.  Hopefully, you can finally see the individual trees in the forest.  Divide and conquer; one bite at a time; eat the elephant.  Until then get hubby to rub those shoulders. Better yet, you’ve got an excuse to get a complete massage.

By Dr. Juan Harrison




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