Seva Stress Relief

February 14, 2011 by Kate Source: sikhism
It's that time of year in the oilfield - they affectionately call it The Hundred Days' War. It's super busy, there's never enough staff, and everyone is working overtime just to keep up. I was starting to really feel run-down, my pain levels were increasing, and I felt like I never had any me-time. My coworker and I have both broken down and cried at our desks.

I like my job, but not like this. I had to figure a way to deal with this crazy time of year. So I made a bit of an attitude adjustment, which helped me while I was at work, and I also started visiting the Gurdwara a lot more.

Kirtan is very soothing for the soul, I must say. But, as I have discovered, so is Seva - selfless service, an important part of the Sikh faith. My friend Kamalpreet (in the blue Pugh beside me in the picture) would often meet me at the Gurdwara and we would do Seva together with his friends. Eventually, people didn't even look twice when the white chick wandered into the kitchen to scrub pots, and I feel comfortable doing Seva on my own in the kitchen.

While I don't find scrubbing pots at home especially cathartic, doing the dishes at the Gurdwara is different. It helps calm me down after a tough day at work, somehow. Especially after listening to some Kirtan for a half hour or so.

Weeks that I am not able to go to the Gurdwara as often, or at all, I find myself feeling more stressed and my chronic pain condition gives me more pain. I think there is definitely a connection, and I will continue to fight my stress, and hence my pain, by doing Seva.

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