Now, I'd like to propose some tools or techniques on getting through the experiences that we might otherwise like to curl up into a ball and pretend aren't happening. You could curl up into a ball and pretend they aren't happening-- Free Will gives you that choice, of course. But there's no growth in that choice. And aside from maybe catching up on some sleep, I can think of very little benefits in the long run. Besides, it's been my personal experience that if you don't face this lesson head on now, it will come back to you in another set of circumstances, another time down the road.
So here we are: a sample of tools you can use when life's asking you to make some lemonade.
Yup. Sounds cliche, but there's a reason we need to be reminded every so often. When we're stressed out, we tend to breathe in a very shallow manner. Bringing your attention back to your breath is a way to really take in some oxygen and calm your nerves. Breathe deep into your stomach and engage your diaphragm. In through your nose, out through your mouth.
It's easy to get carried away and lose contact with our physical selves. Stress pulls us up into our head and shoulders.
3) Look around.
Where are you right now? Right in this moment, what's going on? Chances are, you're concerning yourself with something that's already happened, or you are projecting into the future. Come back to this very moment and see that you're safe. You might not totally dig your current circumstances, but the most beneficial way to move forward is from a place of being calm and collected. So come back to now, and see that you're safe.
Are you desiring or believing you can control another's actions/perceptions/beliefs/choices? You can't. Plain and simple. So if you're wound up about how someone else has behaved, is behaving, or might behave: let it go. If the outcome of whatever you are worried about involves another's input or free will, you are better off coming to terms with the fact that aspects of the outcome will be beyond you. This can feel more stressful or a little freeing: you decide.
This is an aspect of surrender. Additionally, you can choose to trust that there's a purpose to all of what happens, and it doesn't have to be apparent right now. You don't have to have all of the answers in this one single moment, either.
6) Remember that no one is perfect.
We ALL make mistakes, we all fall down from time to time. It's a part of being here. If we never messed things up from time to time, we'd never have the opportunity for growth. It's a matter of perspective: you can see it as a failure, or you can see it as being one step closer to a victory, one more piece of wisdom obtained. As Einstein said, "Failure is success in progress."
Lastly, I invite you to daydream about what it is you really want. How are these circumstances or events pushing you toward an even more courageous, open-hearted, honest, creative, authentic version of yourself? You are deserving of those brilliant dreams. Let these challenges be a reminder of how you have what it takes, rather than a perceived punishment.
Light to you in your moments of darkness.