Pressure to get it right. Pressure to live up to expectations. Pressure not to do too much damage. Pressure to know your children well. Pressure to know when to pour in and when to stand back. Pressure to make choices. Pressure to plan and organize. Pressure to be flexible.
Mombarded by pressure.
There’s pressure all around us. With the availability of social media, we have access to all sorts of options and opinions. That can be a great thing that encourages and equips us. It can also be an overwhelming thing—pressure to measure up to something or someone. We now know more of what we’re not doing well. We get immediate feedback.
Of course, we control a lot of the information we come in contact with. We can limit what and who we access or distance ourselves from—on and off social media. That might relieve a little of the external pressure, but it also takes away the encouraging advice. Pressure doesn’t always come from the outside. We let pressure build in ourselves, too.
What happens when too much pressure builds?
It’s not pretty.
And pressure isn’t just about performance. It’s keeping emotions bottled up. It’s not dealing with things so that even the good stuff seems murky. Everything gets mixed up and muddy. Even when we face what should be relatively simple choices, we can’t see clearly, and we grasp to understand with enough clarity to make a decent decision. And we feel more pressure.
The solution to pressure isn’t trying to take away or ignore all the things that cause pressure. That’s not possible. If it seems possible, you’re living in a fairy tale world, and something is going to blindside you down the road. The solution to pressure is dealing with it in healthy ways as it comes along. It’s having your eyes open to it, admitting that you feel stressed, something is bothering you more than you’d like to admit, or you just want to stay in bed. That doesn’t mean you actually stay in bed, but dealing with pressure takes authenticity and perseverance—authenticity to admit where you are and perseverance to keep going.
Dealing with pressure is the commitment to not get stuck—not because you’re fighting through the muck of life on your own but because you know God wants you to keep moving, learning each step of the way. He doesn’t waste the messes and frustrations of parenting. You might feel pressure as a mom, but God might be trying to teach you something as his child. He’ll help you with the mom stuff as you yield to him as his child. It’s when you try to do the mom stuff on your own that you’ll get into trouble. Talk about pressure! Doing it on your own is about as high pressure as is possible…and getting it done on your own isn’t actually possible. When you follow God’s way, you’ll still feel pressure at times, but there will be an underlying peace, too, knowing that he carries the bulk of the pressure for you.