Yes – to varying degrees, we probably all create stress in other people. The first step is to accept that is the case. Some of us have a congratulatory view of ourselves. We say we are caring, in touch with our feelings, interested in relationships and so on. We are such nice people. How could anyone accuse us of creating stress?
Some of us have a negative view of ourselves. We often feel rejected, let down by others, we have low self esteem and so on. We believe that others give us stress. It’s that way round.
However we are all human. We all have faults. It may be unwise to claim perfection in any aspect of our lives. Everything we do and say may be faulty to some degree. Take any conversation between two people, for example. This may be one of the most frequent sources of stress in our lives. A conversation with our partner at home or our manager at work can go wrong and leave us feeling tense, frustrated, not understood or appreciated; in other words, stressed. We often know beforehand that these negative experiences are likely to take place and we may do our best to avoid them.
We can have ‘weather’ conversations about trivial topics. These may look like a good way of avoiding stressful talk. But this may mean you avoid talking about how your partner came to crash the family car. It may mean you don’t get round to talking about why this person is taking a lot of time off work. When serious topics are not grappled with, stress can increase.
What might we do? Any suggestions?