People often ask me, “ Dr. Laurie, why do you put such an emphasis on stress in your Stress-Tension-Anxiety Recovery System ( S.T.A.R.S ) of Wellness™….is it really that important…isn’t stress just a normal part of our lives?”
The answer lies in understanding the insidious role stress plays in depleting the quality of our lives—physically, mentally, socially and spiritually.
Like so many Americans, I grew up feeling stressed out, uncomfortable in my skin, and anxious most of the time. I knew no other way to exist. Then at the age of 24, a life-threatening bone tumor stopped me in my tracks and forced me to change my whole perspective. It was tough because for the first 24 years of my life, I knew success in the outer world sense by working hard at everything I did. I was very-conscientious- -living with unrelenting standards— automatically applied to every aspect of my life. What I didn’t realize was that by giving so much to the outer world, I was sacrificing my inner world. In looking back, I’m not surprised that both my mind and body got compromised. I now realize that like so many hardworking adults, the affection for perfection—and the constant exhaustion that goes with it– made me vulnerable to a serious illness.
But everything changed after that hole in my bone awakened me to the virtues of whole person healing and why I needed to face the risks of living in the biochemistry of too much stress. I can honestly say overcoming this was the most challenging experience in my life. But what I learned during my quest to heal changed my whole life.