How to handle tough situations by following 5 easy steps?
Tough Situations come in life just like the good things. If the smoothness of life comes as sunshine the tough time comes as the darkness of night. Life is a series of peaks and valleys. Sometimes you’re up, sometimes you’re down. But it’s the difficult times where we need a little more support and guidance. Sometimes, life just wallops us against the head, deals us with such a blow that it takes our breath away.
A loved one dies, you lose a job, someone you care about gets sick, your car gets totaled, or hopelessness hits you.
What do we do when the world around us crumbles, when we can’t seem to find a way out?
The times when things are falling apart are exactly the best times to practice mindfulness and compassion. These are the times we’re preparing for, in a way, when we meditate regularly with mindfulness and compassion, during the non-traumatic times.
The times when the world is collapsing are the richest areas of exploration, and when we need the tools most.
5 steps to handle tough situations.
1. Stay Positive.
“Life is not the way it’s supposed to be, it’s the way it is. The way you cope is what makes the difference.” – Virginia Satir
Now I know this may sound cliche, but the thing about cliches is that they’re typically true. Staying positive is only a small part in getting through the difficult times, but it’s an important part.
When you stay positive, you’re putting yourself in the best position possible to not only make it through those bad times, but become a better person in the process.
You can do one of two things when life takes a turn for the worst. You can remain positive and remind yourself that there really is a light at the end of the tunnel and that you’ll make it through, or you can curl up in the fatal position and relegate yourself to being nothing more than a victim of circumstance.
I’m not saying that you can never have a bad day, or get a little discouraged, or shed a tear. But I am saying you have to eventually pick up the pieces and start moving forward.
2. Focus on What You Can Control, Not What You Can’t
Some situations are beyond your control and no matter what you do, you can’t change a thing. You’re setting yourself up for frustration and tough times when you focus your time and energy on things you can’t control. You’re also making the situation seem even more bleak than it actually is because you’re focusing on the negatives.
You should instead focus on the things that are within your control because that’s the only way you can make a change that’s actually going to help you. Make a list of everything you can control about the situation and divert all of your focus towards those things. Anything that’s not on the list, tough things beyond your control,doesn’t get any attention.
3. Know What You’re Grateful For
Gratitude means showing appreciation for all the good in your life, instead of focusing on the negative. Get clear about what it is that you’re grateful for.
Write out everything in your life you can think of that you’re grateful for having or experiencing. An even more powerful exercise is to think of the one person you’re most grateful for, and write a note explaining why you’re so grateful for having that person. Then give him or her a call and read that note to them.
The difficult time you’re going through will start to seem less significant when it’s compared to everything that’s going right in your life.
If someone else is at fault for the bad situation you find yourself in, the natural response is to harbor anger or resentment towards that person.
But what if instead, you forgave that person. You accepted what happened, but you no longer held it against them. You would feel better, because now instead of focusing on the negative feelings you have toward that person, you can focus on moving forward.
You can’t really get through a tough time when your every thought is about how upset you are with the person who got you into that mess. It just makes things more difficult.
Or maybe the tough time you’re going through is a direct result of something that you did. I’ve been there before, and I know I continually beat myself up about it. I couldn’t forgive myself. I almost felt obligated to be hard on myself.
The problem with that is, it only makes things worse. You get caught in this revolving door of self-hatred and feeling worse, and there’s a swirl of anger and frustration and self-doubt. It’s ultimately a recipe for disaster.
5. Change It Up
After you identify the key takeaways from your tough time, you just need to make a change. If it’s a change you can implement immediately, do it. You don’t want be in the middle of a difficult situation longer than necessary. If it’s something that you can’t implement right now, take note of it so you can use it when the situation calls for it.
But it’s pointless to learn from the difficult times if what you learned doesn’t directly affect your actions.
I’ve really come to embrace the difficulties and struggles that life hands me because I know there’s a silver lining in each one of them. You’re a lot more resilient than you give yourself credit for.