We are already six months into the year. Would you believe that? It’s amazing how fast time is moving.
My half year has been riddled with ups and downs. The greatest difficulty has been dealing with disappointments and change. It is especially painful and difficult when it feels like life is dealing you one difficult situation after another. On the flip side however, is that superb things have happened along the way and I am deeply appreciative of them. What do you do when things go unplanned? When things go wrong? When situations cast some self-doubt and you question yourself? When you have to question whether you’re good enough for something; even when factors around you seem to suggest that you aren’t as good. Here are a few reflections that have helped me in dealing with disappointments and regaining my perspective.
- Allow yourself to feel the emotions. You could be dealing with difficult intricacies at work, or treading along the thin ice of a failing or failed relationship, or battling disappointments from loved ones, a single mother coming to terms with an absentee spouse or better half or dealing with the repercussions of that important presentation or pitch that went horribly wrong. The list is indeed endless, and I have found that a situation or setback is highly personal. You cannot begin to compare your situation, or to diminish a situation you find yourself in. You are highly unique and what happens to you is purely personal. I am slowly learning that it is important to let yourself experience the emotions that come with each situation. Allow yourself to feel what you are feeling, without an agenda of rushing it or speeding up the process of moving on. Just. Let. It. Be.
- Don’t take it personally. When you take something personally, it unnecessarily narrows your point of view and prevents the acquiring of wisdom, which is an ability to see life from a deeper, broader, more meaningful perspective.
- Take a big picture perspective. The ability to self-reflect is the essence of good mental health. Take some time to explore what is happening for you around this event – what it means to you and what it has taught you about life.
- Don’t let it shake you. This one is difficult. It’s easy to really question yourself when things go wrong. It’s not uncommon to find yourself doubting yourself, your character, your potential and your ability. I have learnt, and I’m continually learning, that disappointment doesn’t necessarily reflect on our weaknesses and inadequacies. It serves as a light to better understand ourselves, understand our capabilities, our emotional intelligence& soundness, and embrace acceptance. The way forward and solutions may not necessarily be clear, but believe me they are there. All it needs is time, some soul-searching and reflection and most importantly seeking out advice from those around you.
- Embrace change. Change is amazing. The more you embrace it, the more you open up to amazing possibilities. You unlock a side of you, and some great opportunities that you previously did not know existed. Admittedly it is a painful and slow process, but the growth that comes out of it is undoubtedly far more rewarding.
You learn so much from things that happen to you, disappointments do not define you. What defines you is your ability to handle the situation, embrace the situation and keep your head above the water.
I hope this helps you in dealing with the rigours that life has dealt you. It’s been a tough first half of the year on different fronts in my life. Life is complicated, difficult and a roller coaster in itself. But life is indeed beautiful, do not let that beauty pass you by.
Love and light.