Life isn’t a bed of roses. Sometimes things work out which is wonderful. Sometimes they work out for a long time. But not everything is going to work out for the best forever. No matter how good one has it, there will be some sort of trials and suffering. If this is news to you, welcome to humanity!
What do you do during the down times, when you’re in difficult situations that are far from favorable? That’s what this post is about.
If the present moment is awful you do have some choices. If you are dependent on another person it may take some planning such as finding another place to live or getting a job but it can be done and has been done by hundreds of thousands of people before you.
On the other hand, if your present moment is dangerous you must find a way to get out now. Call a friend. Call a hotline. Call a church. Walk over to your neighbors house and tell them. Keep telling people until someone helps you.
Other than that, if you just are unhappy with your present situation you have four options.
You are capable of deciding which one you can do and will be best for the situation in your life. You have the power to direct your future. It’s not up to anyone else to choose for you or to do the work for you. If you want something you’re going to have to go out and get it.
If you landed on this post, perhaps you have a problem right now that you need to solve. One of these will be your answer. You get to decide.
Talk to the person you’re having an issue with, forgive, if you need to forgive (yourself and others), do the work, don’t procrastinate, seek help, learn a new skill set, delegate: these are just a few of the countless ways you might be able to change a situation.
Change your view from something being a problem to it being a challenge that will make you grow, give up the need to be in control, stop sweating the small stuff, be grateful for what you do have, alter your plans so that you are more satisfied: all are ways to accept a situation. The key here is to truly accept and be OK with it. If you can’t be OK with it you’ll eventually have to choose another solution.
If you’re able to leave a bad situation that is not fixable you should. If you’ve done all you can to fix a problem and this problem is ruining your life and stealing your joy, it’s time to move on. Quit that soul sucking job, leave an unhappy relationship in which you fight more than you don’t, unfriend someone on social media or in real life if their idea of friendship is more taking than giving. If you need to, you can find a way to move into a different living situation or even move out of state. You live but one life. Don’t spend it doing something that makes you miserable and depressed, feeling hurt and unhappy.
This is a choice. You may not feel like it or want to hear this, but it is. If you’re going to stay in a situation without trying to fix it or learning how to accept it that’s a choice. If this is your choice and you choose to be miserable, don’t expect anyone to help you. Complaining to others without doing any work to improve your life only brings others down. If you don’t want to take their advice or try, guess what. You might be the one who is unfriended. It’s completely draining for others to constantly complain. It becomes a way of life for some people. Those people are called energy vampires. Don’t let that be you.
It’s easy to become a victim. I understand it. I’ve been there myself. Sometimes we get to a point where we just feel so drained from a situation that we don’t have the mental or physical energy to even try. That’s happened to me with chronic back pain and depression. It’s an easy hole to slip into without even realizing it. And it can be a big hole to try to climb out of. But when you recognize what you’re doing to others and how you’re living your life you can make another choice.
In life, we’ll have to make these problem solving decisons over and over again. In my case, for example, I have to combine some of these solutions. I need to learn how to change what aspects of my health conditions I can and accept what I can’t. With each and every setback (and there are many) I need to evaluate the situation and do the work I need to do, mentally and physically to be the best I can be. It’s going to have to be enough for me. My best won’t look like yours or anyone else’s. If I know I’m doing my best it has to be enough.
I’ve learned these things from the talks and writing of Eckhart Tolle. I recommend any or all of his books and searching for his talks on YouTube. I don’t think he’s ever taken one down from YouTube as they are incredibly easy to find. I practice these myself. I continually remind myself that I have choices. No matter what challenges life presents you with you always have a choice too. You might as well pick the one that going to make you the most happy.
I can tell you this: making the right choice might not be easy. It may mean taking a risk. You may win or you may be faced with another problem. Depending on your situation, you may lose things. You may lose people. But doing nothing and being miserable is not the right answer for anyone, ever.
May you be happy and well.