Story – Stress Management

A great reminder about Stress Management…

A lecturer, when explaining stress management to an audience, raised a glass of water and asked, “How heavy is this glass of water?” Answers called out ranged from 20g to 500g.

The lecturer replied, “The absolute weight doesn’t matter. It depends on how long you try to hold it. If I hold it for a minute, that’s not a problem. If I hold it for an hour, I’ll have an ache in my right arm. If I hold it for a day, you’ll have to call an ambulance. In each case, it’s the same weight, but the longer I hold it, the heavier it becomes.”

He continued, “And that’s the way it is with stress management. If we carry our burdens all the time, sooner or later, as the burden becomes increasingly heavy, we won’t be able to carry on.”

“As with the glass of water, you have to put it down for a while and rest before holding it again. When we’re refreshed, we can carry on with the burden.”

“So, before you return home tonight, put the burden of work down. Don’t carry it home. You can pick it up tomorrow. Whatever burdens you’re carrying now, let them down for a moment if you can.”

I do not know the author of this story, however if you do – please feel free to let me know. Thanks so much!


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  • Kweh

    Reply Reply September 29, 2021

    The Teacher who first gave this story was the Thai Buddhist monk Ajahn Chah of the Thai Buddhist forest tradition. Later, his Australian disciple called Ajahn Brahm based in Perth Australia expanded on this parable.

    The said Ajahn Chah was regarded as a fully enlightened Monk and Teacher who died in 1990. He had given many such inspiring stories in his life. “A Still Forest Pond” is a good book compiling his many witty short stories. U can google it. PS “Ajahn” means teacher, a honorific term and word used when talking to a senior Buddhist monks in Thailand. Another is “Luang Phor” which means “Venerable Grandfather” for very senior and elderly monks as a mark of deep respect and gratitude for their teachings.

    • Jane

      Reply Reply September 29, 2021

      Thanks for sharing this information Kweh 🙂

  • april joy

    Reply Reply July 8, 2017

    Can i ask who is the author of this story?

    • Jane

      Reply Reply July 8, 2017

      Hi April –

      As indicated in the post, I don’t know the author of the story, however if you do, please let me know!

      Warm wishes, Jane

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