Did you hear on the television how working for more than 40 hours a week can cause heart attacks?

Last week, a cousin of mine died from a heart attack at the age of 37 years. When people live under constant pressure, they have to find some way of relieving the strain so they do not end up having a nervous breakdown. So what do they do?

Stress, discord and struggle are the norms of life today. Within that, we try and find the good things in life. How do you enjoy your life?

Some dear friends of mine gave me a wonderful book called The Tao Of Pooh, written by Benjamin Hoff. In this book, the author has put forth the teachings of Tao in relation to living a healthy long life in a hilarious dialogue between Pooh, Piglet and himself.

Chinese philosophy, Hindu Vedic philosophy and Buddhist philosophy have one thing in common - they emphasise the presence of a harmony between nature and man.

"The more man interfered with the natural balance produced and governed by the universal laws, the further away the harmony retreated into the distance," says Hoff.

The result of harmonious living is happiness. What we are doing today is forcing ourselves against our own personal nature and persisting with a struggle and conflict in life, unaware of the blissful life that awaits us within if we care to try and find it.

"Taoism is simply a way of appreciating, learning from and working with whatever happens in everyday life." So what should we do?

As I have always said, firstly we could start by reminding ourselves we are more than just a physical body - we have a spirit which is connected with and in harmony with a much larger universal energy.

Secondly, we can try and become simple minded. Why complicate things?

Intellectualising everything often makes us lose the wisdom which comes from quiet, inner reflection. Instinct and intuition are more powerful and usually show the right way when the mind is in a dilemma.

Let us set free our mind and spirit and experience the happiness. Unhappiness and struggle arises from forcing our might against all odds. We dont need to stop changing and improving. "We need to recognise what is there," says Hoff.

Recognising our limitations and working accordingly helps prevent illness and misery. Is imposing excessive demands on our workforce going to give us better productivity? Or is it going to damage the economy, due to absenteeism, and our society, due to stress and breakdown of personal and social values?

We just need to make more time to listen to ourselves and have the courage to live life.

Yield and not resist, like a cork floats on water again and again even if you force it down with a stick.

Dr Milind Jani works as a conventional and
holistic GP and Dr Asmita Jani as Ayurvedic Consultant from 3 Eaton Gardens, Hove.

Call them on: 01273 777448 or e-mail: milind.jani@ntlworld.com