I fucking hate superlatives. Especially in my marriage. My wife uses them all the time and it really winds me up. But the problem isn’t hers, it is mine.
Greg Anderson said, “The perfect no-stress environment is the grave. When we change our perception we gain control. The stress becomes a challenge, not a threat. When we commit to action, to actually doing something rather than feeling trapped by events, the stress in our life becomes manageable.”
His point is, and this may sound quite patronising, but my wife doesn’t cause me stress from her superlatives, I CHOOSE to feel stressed and frustrated by the way she talks. Every time she says, “I have to do EVERYTHING around here!” What I actually hear is, “Fuck sake Tony, you do absolutely NOTHING around here!” This is my perception of what she has said and not what she has actually said. I feel a similar reaction whenever she says she ALWAYS has to do something, I hear the words you NEVER. The one thing me and my wife have never been good at is communication. Our perceptions of circumstance are so similar, that we would automatically assume we know what the other implied, rather than understanding what was said.
That said, we could never discuss this, because both of us have an ‘attack is the best form of defence’ stratagem; if we attempted to enter into dialogue a superlative would be used and the other would jump on it as a sleight on their abilities to be a parent or spouse and would retort with anger and contempt.
Maybe I should listen to the words of Hans Selye when he says, “Mental tensions, frustrations, insecurity, aimlessness are among the most damaging stressors, and psychosomatic studies have shown how often they cause migraine headache, peptic ulcers, heart attacks, hypertension, mental disease, suicide, or just hopeless unhappiness”
I don’t fancy any of that, so the future isn’t bright, but on the positive side, two of these effects lead to a stress free life according to Mr Anderson and the grave might deliver peace.