How to cope with difficult circumstances and emotions?
The tradition of lamenting over one’s own life dissatisfaction does not dwindle and it seems that it will not disappear as a sociological phenomenon. Dramatizing an unpleasant or undesired situation, problem, etc. is nothing new to us and frequently we are absolutely unaware of such a tendency!
Imagination can do anything – that is what the world’s most renowned psychiatrists will tell you. First of all, you yourself generate a huge amount of suffering and frustration because you expose yourself to the mental torture of devaluation and thus induce so-called unsuitable emotions. How are they created? As a result of an internal monologue composed of a bunch of subjective and irrational beliefs we have accepted as relevant and which, according to experts, are a matter of pointless thinking! If you keep standing in front of the mirror all day long looking for your faults, it will naturally lead to a feeling of discomfort in your being’s temple, affect your self-confidence and at the same time your good mood.
Moreover, a long time ago Epictetus wrote in his “Enchiridion” that people were not troubled by things but by the WAY in which they looked at things. Shakespeare paraphrased him in “Hamlet” in the line: “There is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so”. We often tend to forget very simple facts while pressurised by our hurried everyday routine. However, it is not only in the structure of the thought but in the values you YOURSELF consider as worthy of a pedestal. Plainly speaking, we do not have to accept anything as a final failure, without any chance of getting out of it.
How to cope with difficult circumstances and emotions in a mature and practical manner?
- Decide what is objectively possible, whether a frustrating situation is really an obstacle in your way or not. For example, if your partner does not support you in starting a new career, is he/she a true brake, or have you actually found a perfect alibi for giving it up all because you are subconsciously troubled by the potential fear of failure? Or are you perhaps looking for someone else’s approval because you are not sure that your decision is correct?
- If you are in a situation which can be influenced just a little or not at all, accept it – in a mature and dignified manner, and accept frustrations and problems simply as “normal” life phenomena which are absolutely not blockades but temporary handicaps. Moreover, there are no laws saying that a certain failure must not happen to US.
- Contrasts are necessary to all of us. They help us differ what is important or unimportant, good or bad, to cherish gratitude, to appreciate what we currently have or used to have but were not able to appreciate – so we revive that mistake through loss. But mistakes are not there to be repeated but to be learnt from.
- The answer is usually in the cause and the cause is inside you. If you decide to sit on the bathroom floor in self-pity over what has happened to you, you will additionally exhaust yourself, become inefficient in finding a potential solution to a problem, i.e. a challenge. It always has its useful side – it helps you get to know your deeper self and the reasons why something is actually happening to you.
- Everything is a matter of personal perspective as well as the wish to change it – if it has proved to be destructive to you. If you are searching in the dark, you will start finding it in everything! … And that is so easy and comfortable – because a box of sugar is a box of salt to someone.
- You possess much more strength than you can even imagine, and you will first realise it when it is the only remaining option. If you have to fight for your own and your family’s survival, you will have no time to indulge in the “luxury” of depression. You have no one’s help or support? You must simply build it on your own, and that is not impossible. In any case, the only thing we really possess is our being’s temple. Nothing else has a guarantee. Neither happiness nor sorrow is eternal!
- Instead of despair – get stronger. You invest the same amount of energy in either activity! Positive distractions may help you – not like a permanent solution to a problem, but like a benefit facilitating your state of chaos. If you have a headache, the effect will definitely be worse if you absolutely focus on the pain.
Most importantly, be determined to change what you really can, peacefulness to accept what you cannot influence, and wisdom to tell the difference between the two!