“Problems & Troubles”
We all have them and unfortunately, NO ONE is immune …
My all time favorite teacher, Jesus said, “ guaranteed 100% in this world, you WILL have troubles (my paraphrase) but fear not I have overcome the world” -meaning He lived His life with HUGE problems… and He lived as an example to us in such a way to show us how to get through them, (key word THROUGH)… including being hated and persecuted….
Really, when you think about it, the only way to not have troubles is to be dead!
Frankly speaking, I am NOT a big fan of problems…… who is?
However, since I have had MANY and waaaay too many to mention here I have learned a few things about “getting through” and hopefully have gained some insight valuable enough to pass on to you- if it helps….
So in giving you some help, let’s begin with some basic truths.
Basic truths are things that are true for everyone, and don’t change.. kind of like the sun setting in the West and rising in the East… its always true and doesn’t change no matter what part of the world you are in.
- Problems ARE normal! -when we think we shouldn’t have any we set ourselves up for disappointment.
- NONE of us are perfect ! NO ONE! Everyone hurts someone sometimes and makes stupid choices that hurt others. We ALL have and we all do -sometimes intentional, sometimes not, BUT we ALL do hurt others.
- We ALL cope differently based on our maturity at the time, and available resources. All of us cope with our pain differently using some form of anger and fear related behaviors: addictions , backing away, closing down, being aggressive, being passive, gossiping, bullying, pushing too hard forward, tears, swearing, yelling, hating, lashing out, revenge, dividing, on and on – you get it.
Here is a general small list of problems/troubles we can expect if we are alive:
- Any problem forced on us by the choices of others enforcing their free will: * this can be either bad or good decisions that force us to change something big or small in our lives and acts kind of like a domino effect e.g: had an agreement or feelings in a relationship that changed etc
- Any problem forced on us by circumstances out of our control:
* landlord decided to sell the home you love and have been renting,
* horrible weather conditions *someone drinking and driving hurts you or ones you love or worse- kills *people you love holding grudges and refusing to allow you to be a part of their lives * those who can’t forgive *medical systems that inflicted fatal or devastating results * healthy people suddenly becoming critically ill
- Anything we do to ourselves: * Failure to do our due diligence (we all make this mistake) *Ignoring red flags (we hope something is better than what our gut is telling us (wishful thinking) * Willfully choosing to do something we know will not end well
- Or just living in the same world with other broken people
However… (this is the HOPEFUL PART)…..
We are TOTALLY 10,000% in control of OUR reactions to these problems (I know- easier said than done ) AND if we know that we still have control over our own selves, then we have an opportunity to take the “ bad” and make it mean something amazing or even better in our own lives.
There are some big keys in helping oneself during difficult times and the following are a small but powerful list of some things we can to do help ourselves even when we feel helpless.
- First and foremost come to terms with the truth that YOU ARE NOT POWERLESS. Powerlessness is learned helplessness and involves how you think in your thoughts, or belief systems. (For sure there are some really, really serious situations that some people have been in where physically they are powerless however, -I am not talking about this here)
- Own YOUR THOUGHTS and what comes OUT Of YOU...… again my favorite teacher Jesus, “it’s not what goes into a man that ruins him (actions of others), it’s what comes out of him (in reaction to what others have done) that ruins him.” In taking ownership for who is going to help you and what comes OUT of YOU – it’s so powerful when you see it’s YOU- It starts with YOU. Others can help you in some way but NO ONE can climb in your head or heart and control your thinking or feelings without your permission. Yup it’s hard to not want revenge, and it’s hard to hurt so badly you want to fight back… but it’s in seeing and managing the ONLY thing you can, YOU that you become calm and can start to think about the best solutions. Start by helping yourself choose to see things differently. Let’s just assume that you don’t know everything and that there is more information you need because what you have been thinking hasn’t created any healing or resolve. That’s YOUR job to find out what you don’t know and then begin a real assessment at 360 degree perspective… (this is called higher intelligence )….Other peoples perspectives whether you like it or not are part of that “WHOLE” Picture. Stay humble and ask for the other pieces from others… don’t be afraid of the truth, even if it means you might have to admit you might have been wrong.
- Have COMPASSION for YOUR HURTING heart and HELP yourself… Failure to hear your own pain and acknowledgement of it leads to self pity and that won’t help! Self pity is powerlessness. COMPASSION for self is empowering and comforting. Hear your hurt, cry those tears, acknowledge the pain, disappointment, anger, and if you have to cry through the process then so be it- but LOVE yourself. This is incredibly important.
“Fear nothing but to betray yourself, for if you lose your best friend, who will watch over you”. Candace 2002 – As an adult educator I taught my students the following question to ask when feeling needy or hurting: “who is the first person to help in times of trouble?”- humorously- using the example of asking : “who knows when you have the feeling you need to pee”? You get the point. The person who feels it first is the one responsible to help support you in the problem. Hear yourself and honor your pain. By doing this, you can have a sense of knowing that YOU are able to be there for yourself when others can’t/won’t and when able, to share with them what your needs are, being that you are the only one who really knows. Imagine you are on a hike and fell and no one was around to help… we find a way to help ourselves until help arrives.
- Find a good support system: life coach, church group, close friends, services offered by those who you feel can support and understand your situation (because you have been honest enough to share them) and with balance, ask for any help with any things that you are truly unable to do for yourself– this is important as you don’t want to perpetuate a feeling of powerlessness by having a, “I am so weak” -mind-set… . you are STRONGER than you know and certainly more resourceful than you know….
Lastly.. I want to end with a little understanding of what problems and support systems look like when it gets BIG……
Consider a tree, a well-established tree.
This could represent your life, marriage, kids, job, health, where you live etc… you have worked hard over the years to establish your life. Building your life is the equivalent of a solid oak tree, big and tall and its roots firmly in the ground.
Life has “normal storms”, these can cause the tree to bend, maybe even lose a few leaves or even branches, but the roots remain firm in the ground (smaller troubles that you can get through with counseling, having a change of heart, getting better coping tools, forgiving, etc). These are part of the normal problems in life.
Then “IT” happens- THE BIG ONE… massive storms in the form of an emotional earthquake like:
- Death of anyone you love
- Serious health diagnosis of you or a loved one
- Physical earthquake or dangerous storm
- Financial devastation
- Finding out the person who you love, isn’t the person you thought they were….
It is in times like the above you might find yourself ripped from your ground and roots exposed and now find yourself, in shock and in a total different place than where you were planted…..
This is truly hard and devastating and I have walked closely with others who have experienced this and have experienced this myself….
This is where “stakes” in the ground can help…. When you are in shock, and find you have been involuntarily moved by problems or devastating challenges, you will find your roots again… I promise…and when done well with dignity and emotional maturity and health, it will become complete with love, grace, forgiveness and compassion for those you were once devastated by..
And you will find those who are “stakes” in the ground to help you and to hold you up while you go through the shock of finding your established roots again. This will take time, but I promise you will can get through this with stakes…
Stakes don’t’ do the work for you, but they hold you up when you feel like you can’t and offer you the following:
Words of encouragement: Cards, notes, flowers
Practical help: cleaning, baking, laundry, driving to or attending appointments with you, babysitting, helping write a resume etc
Crying with you: on the phone or in person…
Offering you needed resources when required: referrals to counselors, doctor’s, financial information, legal support, community resources, life coach referrals etc..
Truly, we are all sharing the same planet. We all have the same basic human needs. We are all broken in some way (not perfect). We all want to feel valued – (even the “bad guys” are doing things to get their needs met- selfishly for sure) but we all have a basic instinct to survive a tough world….
We all have more in common than what tears us apart.
I hope these thoughts bring you hope… .
If you want help to get through these things, I will be starting my coaching practice soon and would be happy to discuss options for your goals, challenges and associated coaching costs.
My specialty is in crisis control, self esteem issues, relationship dignity and added specialties of resources and consulting in media, adult education and healthcare resources.
Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
And in the meantime, pick up this book found here:
by Dr. Steven Stosny, Soar Above!
Love Candace xxoo
“Disability is the inability to believe in possibility” – Candace 2012