Can’t Run? My Stalemate with Stress


Just recently I was able to watch the movie Forrest Gump, a story which is viewed as an epic American film. Confused, I underestimated this movie and assumed it was just another thing to watch. But I was horribly wrong. Although Forrest Gump takes place around 1982 it is still occupied with life lessons from left to right. One of the many sayings I found most intriguing  is when Forrest says, “I just felt like running”.

I see this quote as some sort of genius.  As an adolescent, I am able to say that stress can consume a lot of your life, personality, and actions.  But how do we get it? How do we obtain something so heavy on our shoulders that it makes living a tad more difficult? Unable to answer this question directly, the solution can be found in a quote by Eckhart Tolle, “Stress is caused by being ‘here’ but wanting to be ‘there’.” As I took this into consideration I came to a conclusion that stress is so hard to deal with because of our unknown future. We are not fully aware with the upcoming result, so our fear will develop into a difficult situation of uncertainty. Going back to our famous quote by Forrest Gump, the only obvious answer is to run, or to put yourself in a position where thinking so critically isn’t necessary. In this scene of the movie, he states that he doesn’t know where he was going or why – but he continued regardless. This kind of mindset is the bane to our subject of stress.

But what if you can’t run? What if you cannot grasp motivation to continue? This has always been my gripe about this topic. I once had an experience where someone told me: “You can just escape. Drop everything behind and run with me.” and although it brings me joy to having been told this, my feelings and “baggage” left me back to square one.  It would be nice to just run, but there are so many factors preventing me from doing so. What confuses me about this subject is war. There are times where there is no chance for you to flee – like in the French Revolution or in any kind of predicament similar to that. In Charles Dickens’ “A Tale of Two Cities” he discusses this uncertainty just in the very first paragraph. The very first sentence stating: “It was the best of times it was the worst of times” could be analyzed as the uncertainty involving the future, where everything is so unknown that the stress begins to grow.

Looking back at this contradicting post, my thoughts are this: the answer is to run but only if there is nothing left to finish. Sadly, stress is persistent. It might be long before I see the true opportunity to run. Because I have things left undone, my waiting game with this frustrating subject continues in this stalemate.


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