Parting Ways With Pressure

Woodturning is my vehicle of choice (mostly by unplanned evolution) and I believe it has helped me in many unplanned or even unrecognized ways.

I am a 4 1/2 year retired business executive who most often felt the pressures of an executive position with an international company. In the last few years of employment, I found turning via my bother-in-law who is an excellent turner and mentor.

I started turning on a “spare time basis”, of which I had little – but found that when turning, my mind became unfettered of the employment workload – if only for a few hours on the odd weekend or rare free evenings. When I retired, I suddenly had a huge time void to fill, and started to spend more time turning! It took me about a year and one half to finally realize how much pressure I was working under and then “almost as an epiphany – I realized that I had achieved a point in my life at 66 1/2 years of age, where the pressure – both recognized and unrecognized was gone”! THAT – was an amazing day!

My wife is the greatest thing that ever happened to me and always completely supportive – but I never realized that she saw the pressure and the effects it had on me “and us” in all areas of our life together in at that time 45 years of marriage. It was actually her that saw the change first – as I felt that I was not doing anything differently than I had done for years! She pointed out how I had become more passive and once again become her love that she wanted to be around. My two daughters see the difference!!

It occurs to me after watching your video on story sharing, that it is woodturning and all of it’s various facets and activities have become a major part of my life in the most calming of ways. Little things in turning like “catches” or even “exploding projects” do not seem to cause me the anxiety they did when I first started while spare time turning while I was employed. This goes double for the “happenings” in life that used to be of great irritation or even anger, that now are taken with an attitude of “well now – what can I do to fix this!”

My health is better, my BP is back to normal and the diabetes with it’s issues are under control.

I am far from being a “turner” yet, as I make mistakes and learn every day – watching and learning from pros like Martin Saban-Smith are of unimagined value.

Turning is certainly not the only vehicle for people to choose, but turning has taught me that there are many ways to deal with pressure, (both known and even worse – the unrealized). The real lesson here is to encourage people to find something – anything – they can become deeply interested in or even passionate about – and allow it to take you on a journey of a much more peaceful life.

Martin – woodturning, your videos, along with many others – and now this vehicle of sharing have greatly enhanced my attitude and my life,
I now look forward to every day and all my pleasures they bring!  Woodturning is my vehicle of choice (mostly by unplanned evolution) and I believe it has helped me in many unplanned or even unrecognized ways.

Thankyou for reading my story.
Dennis Beamish
Cambridge Ontario Canada

One Reply to “Parting Ways With Pressure”

  1. Hi Dennis.
    The minute you mount that piece of wood on the lathe, switch it on, pick up a gouge and start making a mess you are a turner. I, like most people who read these stories, will relate to your story at some level. I could not agree with you more that wood turning can, “take you on a journey of a much more peaceful life.” I believe it does this by distracting the mind from it’s nasty tendency to endlessly chatter away about all kinds of things that are, in the scheme of things, unimportant. The focus of turning demands that the mind concentrate on tasks at hand. This quiets the mind’s chatter and a level of peace of mind is achieved. What is even more rewarding is when you become passionate about turning. At this point you have become addicted to the best addiction on the planet: Wood Turning!

    All the very best my fellow turner.


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