If you were to ask, I would have described myself as a fairly easygoing personality. I don’t get ruffled too easily and I don’t get (too) upset when things go wrong. When I first read David’s article (on pp. 4–5 of this issue), where he describes himself as an unrepentant worrier, I pictured myself brushing aside and forgetting my worries, and mentally patted myself on the back. Yep, I must be stress free! I’d have confidently told you.

But then I took an online stress diagnosis. I usually don’t bother with these types of tests, but this time, some friends had recommended it, and it seemed to be hosted on a reputable medical site, so I thought I’d give it a go. It also seemed like perfect timing, since I was working on this Activated issue devoted to stress relief.

I went into it gamely admitting to myself that I was under a bit more pressure than usual and that I should expect that to be reflected in my results, but after answering the series of questions, I was shocked—even accounting for those factors, my score was much higher than I thought it would be. (Self-awareness might be something else I need to grow in.) The site’s verdict: “You need to manage your stress urgently!” 1

In the end, it turns out this was perfect timing—not just as help for my work on this Activated issue, but so that rather than only pass on the advice and solutions, I could take them to heart for myself.

I think a good start will be to more consciously do as English clergyman Joseph Hall 2 wrote: “I will cast all my cares on God. They cannot burden Him.” A simple but eloquent statement and good advice to put into practice.

  1. You can test yourself here: http://www.elibay.com/stresssystemstest.html
  2. 1574–1656