When life happens

Unexpected and unsettling events will occur in life and you need to be able to handle these events well. Here are some useful guidelines to help you when ‘life happens’.

Recognize that you cannot control everything.

If you can accept this one basic yet fundamental premise you will find yourself well on the way to a stress free life. You must understand that you can make choices and decisions which may not have the outcomes that you hope for. This is not to say those choices or decision are wrong. Instead there are certain things that there is no way to ensure they turn out as we would like. Much as we can plan, order, design our life. Sometimes we get dealt that blow that could potentially destroy our equanimity if we don’t learn that we can really not control everything.

Life is not always fair.

There is one question that robs us of so much time and energy yet we continually ask it all the time; even though we are not really expecting an answer. The question is ‘why me?’ When things happen to us we are so consumed by the questions we do not pursue the answers. The answer may be too difficult to face or it may be just as simple as things were meant to be. If you don’t believe in providence, you may choose to discard that option.

You can make a different choice

The victim position can be satisfying but it will not sustain you. This is similar to the comfort blanket or reassuring dummy that we have as children where we can’t go anywhere without it. It may seem cute a flapping worn piece of worn yarn trailing after a toddler. It does not quite fit the image of an adult. When we have events happen to us that unsettles us or causes concern we naturally want to escape. Go back to our infantile time. It’s a fight or flight. Naturally we choose flight. We retreat rather than face the situation and acknowledge that indeed we can make another choice; one which may be painful. It may be grown up. But it is definitely the only viable choice.

Your response determines the outcomes

Not only do you have to grow up you also need to take responsibility by making conscious decisions. Here comes the good news. The response you make can determine the outcome of a situation. If you know that you can choose your response, you know that actually there is something you can control. You, your response, your decisions, your action, not things, not people not events just you. Now that should make you feel relieved. The only thing you have to worry about is YOU.

 

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