Category Archives: Tips to Avoid Stress

Fighting a War Against Fear

“What if this happens?????? What if that happens?????? What happens then??????” What will I do??????”

These are the questions that popped up in my mind often, even in little situations. You know what’s behind those questions? FEAR. Fear nearly drove me crazy; I mean to the point of losing my mind. What was worse was I knew I didn’t have the answers for those questions.

Last year, after a bout with painful, limited mobility, and depression, I finally said I’ve had it. I couldn’t take any more of the barrage of questions in my mind, or the heavy feeling of responsibility, so—I gave them to God. (I pictured myself giving a huge, car-sized box of fear, anxiety, and blackness to Jesus) I told Him, “Lord, I give this to You. I can’t handle it.” I pictured Him taking the heavy box as though it was a light feather. He said, “Trust Me. It’s OK. I can take it.”

Since then, when FEAR attempts to make an entrance and take over my mind, I picture a soldier standing guard with a spear. The soldier growls, “Don’t even think about it.”, and lunges at the fear-thought, which hastily retreats.

I thank God I don’t have the fear/panic cycle anymore. I’m free, and it’s such a relief; I can just live my life, and let God handle the “What ifs?” etc. He alone is big enough to do it; I’m not.

If you are in the middle of a fear cycle, consider doing as I did. Tell God you can’t do it anymore; give it to Him, and see what He does.

Some resources for fighting fear—please note: the Bible has a lot more.

“Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.” (Philippians 4:6, KJV)

“For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.” (2 Timothy 1:7, KJV)

“If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.”  (James 1:5, KJV)

“Casting all your care upon him;  for he careth for you.” (I Peter 5:7, KJV)

Jesus defeating fear in His disciples: Mark 4:35-40, KJV

©P. Booher

 

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A Remedy for My Impatience

Sometimes I get impatient when helping my mother around the house. I want to move faster, get things done quicker, but she’s not able to. Lately I’ve been praying and asking others to pray about our relationship. One answer that came from those prayers is this: when I’m in a situation and feel impatient, ask myself: what practical steps can I do to move things forward? Is there something else that contributes to the project I can do–move objects out of the way, for instance? Asking myself those questions gets rid of my impatience and the stress that comes from it. My mindset switches from me to her.

©P. Booher

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Low-tech Car Care Tips for Winter

photography of red classic car

Photo by Mikey Dabro on Pexels.com

With winter weather here for people living in the Northern Hemisphere, the cold and snow bring challenges in everyday living, especially for those of us who don’t have garages.

Here are a couple car- care tips to make life a little easier these cold mornings for those whose vehicles stay outside:

1. If possible, park your car so the engine faces the morning sun. Even in very cold weather the sun warms the engine, making it easier to start. This tip came from a co-worker of my mother.

2. Many newer cars have a more aerodynamic design. For instance, the doors of my car are even with the body. There’s no overhang to protect the door seals from the elements. That presents a problem in winter when a storm hits: depending on the direction the snow or ice comes, the car doors freeze shut even though unlocked.

For awhile I sprayed cooking spray on the seals. Then a co-worker told me cooking spray deteriorates over time and draws moisture. He suggested buying a can of silicone spray from the auto parts store and applying that to the seals. While the silicone spray costs more than the cooking spray, it lubricates the seals better without breaking down. This is a case where spending a little bit more is worth it!

3. This next tip isn’t for the car, but for animals that may be around the car: Bang the hood with a broom–make some noise– before starting the car. Cats are known to climb up around the car’s engine, seeking warmth, bringing death to themselves, and costly damage to the engine. Taking a few extra seconds to warn any cat will save the cat and your engine.

4. This tip may help those who drive light-weight vehicles: put some weight in the back. I drive a light-weight front-wheel-drive car. Come winter, I throw a 20 or 25-pound sack of cheap kitty litter in the trunk. This “old-school” trick I picked up from my dad, who routinely put extra weight in the bed of his two-wheel-drive pickup in the winter.

©P. Booher

 

 

 

 

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Filed under Simple Ways to Handle Everyday Problems, Tips to Avoid Stress

Getting It Done, Anyway

My pride would like to think I can go all out, that I don’t need any help. My body tells me otherwise.

A few years ago I came up with some principles and practical ideas to satisfy the need and want to do things around the house while avoiding some stress on my body. I offer the following for anyone who’s interested:

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Diving Into A Sea of Books–How to be an Imperfectionist

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As an avid reader, I get excited about the great number of books out there to read, either for entertainment, education, inspiration or with some books, all three. The quantity available in print, audio, and e-books reminds me of the vast amount of life in the oceans, so I call these book reviews “Diving Into A Sea of Books”. As with diving into an ocean looking for interesting objects, diving into books means you come across mixed results: over here, a book you don’t bother to finish, over there, a “treasure”–one that you like so much you can’t wait to reread it, and over there, a book you read and think, “Meh”.

How to be an Imperfectionist by Stephen Guise goes much deeper into perfectionism than I thought it would. Mr. Guise refers to studies by researchers about what perfectionism is vs. what it is not. The trait is hard for even scientists to pin down, which is probably why some believe not all perfectionism is bad, while others believe it’s all bad–that what’s called “healthy” perfectionism isn’t perfectionism, but rather striving to do the best a person can.

Mr. Guise writes as one who had a tendency towards perfectionism–and found it stifling for the growth of the mind and spirit. In How to be an Imperfectionist he gives ways to free yourself from that mindset, live with more joy and peace, less anxiety, and gain improved physical health as well.

Although the author writes about various studies, this book doesn’t come off as a “textbook”, which is a big plus for me. Mr. Guise gives examples from his own life, as to what worked for him and what didn’t. His tone is as a friend giving a heads-up to another friend.

Comment: This book is a keeper for me. Before I was a teenager, I decided I would avoid mistakes, and so made one of the biggest of my life in going down an unhealthy perfectionist road that only leads to more and more problems. How to be an Imperfectionist opens up a better, much healthier way of thinking.

©P. Booher

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Filed under Diving Into A Sea of Books, Life Issues, Life Lessons, Tips to Avoid Stress

Low-tech Car Care Tips for Winter

photography of red classic car

Photo by Mikey Dabro on Pexels.com

For those of us who don’t have garages for our vehicles, winter can bring  challenges that people whose cars sit in garages don’t have to face. With that in mind, here’s a couple tips to make life a little easier on cold mornings.

  1. If possible, park your car so the engine faces the morning sun. Even in very cold weather the sun warms the engine, making it easier to start. This tip came from a co-worker of my mother.
  2. Many newer cars have a more aerodynamic design. For instance, the doors of my car are even with the body. There’s no overhang to protect the door seals from the elements. That presents a problem in winter when a storm hits: depending on the direction the snow or ice comes, the doors freeze shut even though unlocked. For awhile I sprayed cooking spray on the seals. That was a bad idea; a co-worker told me cooking spray deteriorates over time and draws moisture. He suggested buying a can of silicone spray from the auto parts store and applying that to the seals. While the silicone spray costs more than the cooking spray, it lubricates the seals better without breaking down. This is a case where spending a little bit more is worth it!
  3. This next tip isn’t so much for the car, but for animals that may be around the car: Before starting the vehicle,  bang the hood with your hands–make some noise. Cats are known to climb up around the car’s engine, seeking warmth, bringing death to themselves and costly damage to the engine when the vehicle starts. Taking a few extra seconds to warn any cat will save the cat and your engine.

©P. Booher

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Filed under Tips to Avoid Stress, Tips to Save Money

Ideas for Giving Gifts

paper bags near wall

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Author’s Note: Most of this is a repost from 2014.

Here are a couple ideas for anyone doing some last-minute Christmas shopping. While they are not original with me, I’ve used them, and they’ve been well received. They do cost you in time/money, but you can easily adapt them to your resources. (Please note: these ideas work best if you are familiar with the recipient’s age, circumstances, and likes/dislikes.)

1. Is the recipient someone who doesn’t drive or someone “who has everything” and you’re stumped on what to buy him or her? If you are close enough to the person to know what kinds of everyday products the person uses–facial soap, body washes, facial tissue, for example–buy some in bulk and wrap the items. Let your creativity come into play when you do the wrapping.

Some years ago I came upon this idea for gifts for my mother. It made such a hit with her that this is my “go-to” idea for Christmas and her birthday. I buy products she uses and put them in a basket. I hide gift certificates for restaurants or stores among the items. Depending on the time/energy I have, I either wrap each item or just wrap the basket. My mother enjoys opening her customized gift basket and finding each item hidden among the tissue paper.

True, “everyday stuff” isn’t glitzy. But you know the recipient will use it. If the person comes into a situation where money is tight, the person will appreciate having those everyday items to fall back on even more!

2. Give the gift of time. If the gift recipient needs a certain project done and you have the skill and the means to do it, consider scheduling a time to do whatever the person needs. Your time is worth as much or more than the money you would spend on a gift for the person. You may be surprised at how appreciative the person is!

There’s my gift-giving ideas. Nothing fancy, nothing particularly new about them, but they work. They are flexible and adaptable to your situation and the recipient’s.

Have fun giving gifts!

P. Booher

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The Lure of Worry, the Futility of Worry

 

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beautiful environment field flora

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“Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?” Jesus, Matthew 6:27 (NIV)

I have a problem with worry. In two seconds flat I can worry about something that hadn’t crossed my mind before then. Less than two seconds later I have a tidal wave of worry in my mind. “What do I do if that happens, or if that happens?” or “What if I do this and then that happens? Then what do I do?”

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It Takes Faith–A Word About An Empty Tomb

“…the women…found the stone rolled away  from the tomb, but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus.”  (Luke 24:1-3) (NIV)

Although I didn’t go to church often when I was growing up, I knew Easter Sunday was the day Christ rose from the grave. I didn’t connect that fact to anything else in my life–it was just a “religious fact”.  Christ came; He died; He rose. The tomb is empty. That’s good–but what’s that mean?

Years later, that empty tomb–that knowledge I have by faith–gives me hope. The empty tomb gives me hope because Christ was (and is) too big to be held by it. If He is too big for that, He is certainly big enough to handle any and all of the problems I have now or ever will have. He is not at all bothered by any of my problems. He is not fretting about what to do. He has it under control!

The empty tomb gives me hope because it means Christ is living. If He is living, I can reach Him through prayer. I have access to all His comfort, all His kindness, all His understanding of me. He can give guidance, ease my fears, cancel my worries.

That is what the empty tomb means to me now. It takes faith.

©P. Booher

 

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