Coping with the Ongoing Cycle of Stress, Life, and Responsibility

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Oftentimes, I find it a hard thing not to be stressed out about something. Life always seems to find some way to weigh one down with yet another priority. Whether it be to keep a relationship healthy, making ends meet for one’s family, trying to fit in with others, or making enough money to pay bills, the cycle of priorities is seemingly endless.

Growing up, my dad would always tell me about something called…responsibility.

Responsibility is a word I once feared. I despised it, hated it; it was my worst enemy. I was a child at the time of first hearing this, so I didn’t quite understand the true meaning of responsibility and who was fit to take it on.

But now, I see the importance of it. Responsibility is meant for those who are mature enough to take it up. 

It settles a man down, and when he decides to fulfill it, he begins to make wise choices. His priorities are set straight, and he becomes narrowly focused on his obligation to tackle things that are important to him; like making monthly payments or providing for his wife and kids.

He finds himself limiting his time with friends, turning down occasions to go to parties or have “fun.” Work becomes his best friend, not that he is a slave to it, but he has become acquiesce to work because that is the means to fulfilling his responsibilities.

These things, in turn, make a man out of him. Because he has realized the true nature of life itself; that is, to work, to reap the benefits, then repeat the process. He knows how good it feels to see the fruit of his hands, to know that success has come, something good has happened, all from the work he has put in. And this satisfies him as a man.

Now, this depiction works when a man fully embraces his responsibility and uses it as fuel to drive him to be successful. But many may find it a heavy burden, and let the weight of it crush them.

According to the American Institute of Stress, 55% of Americans are stressed throughout the day, with those from 18-33 years of age under the most stress.

In an age in which gratification can be achieved instantly, it grows difficult by the day to have patience, to wait for what is wanted. The most impatient among us are the young adults, who are just entering into life–life full of responsibility. They are leaving a world of freedom from stress behind, under the jurisdiction of their parents, to take on (many times blindly) what life has to offer them. That is, managing budgets, committing to serious relationships, or working and showing up to a job that they need to provide for themselves.

The key to finding relief is realizing what is truly important. It is balancing time and developing discipline, knowing what you want and going after it. Taking time away from social media, keeping a good routine, scheduling sleep time, and saying positive affirmations about oneself can make going through everyday life a little bit easier. Surrounding yourself with friends who will build you up and help you grow will provide a sense of relief that you don’t have to go through your struggles alone.

Life can weigh you down, but if you have the determination, the drive, and friends who will be there for you, you can conquer your problems and fulfill your responsibilities.

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