Stress in Crunch Time is the uneasy, often unhealthy agitation and energy that accompanies any change. We are prone to be reactive than proactive to its presence. We then respond with three knee jerk reactions:
We retrench as a strategy to win a war. In reality it leads to our slaughter. We learned from World War I that trench warfare is one of the most ineffectual and bloody ways to fight a battle. It has become a byword for stalemate in conflict, with a slow wearing down of opposing forces.
We can’t win when we retrench. Crunch time lobs an unrelenting barrage of changes at us that will not let up or ever be exhausted. We end up being the losers, worn down, deflated, and defeated.
We retreat whenever we feel we are losing a battle. Retreat is a reaction that constantly keeps us on the defensive. When we retreat we cede ground to stress and project our timidity in the face of it.
As General George S. Patton Jr. used to say, “Accept the challenges so that you can feel the exhilaration of victory.”
In the movie Braveheart, there is scene on the battlefield when William Wallace, realizing the over powering stress of the situation, resigns himself to defeat.
It is an agonizing scene to see whatever fight he had left escape his soul, expressed through a deadening tone in his eyes, the deflation of hope on his face as he capitulated into the hands of the enemy.
There are better ways to respond. One of the most potent is to Renew. More on that in the next post.