Don’t let me show cruelty though I may make mistakes. Don’t let me show ugliness though I know I can hate. And don’t let me show evil though it might be all I take. Show me love Show me love … Continue reading →
When we get too close to the fire, we get burned. When we get burned, it hurts. When we feel pain, we recoil. We naturally pull away from what causes us pain and suffering.
Our brains are cool like that.
We learn from pain. We’ll keep ourselves away from the things that make us hurt. We’ll do anything it takes to keep ourselves safe, even if it means avoiding all the things that could hurt. This includes all things that maybe, possibly, potentially could bring on that burn again. Things that could end up bringing great joy, love and enlightenment – Our minds view them as far too risky, too close to the fire. No, we must stay as far away from the fire as possible. Further. Safer.
To what end?
Essentially, we could fail at everything we do, lose everyone we love, find ourselves rejected at every turn. Or, we couldn’t. The risk in avoiding the things that make us afraid is the opportunity cost of passing up a potentially perfect outcome instead. The more we face our fears and even experience losses, the less scary and painful they become. The more happiness we can find. Peace inside. Safer.
Every time we allow our minds to dwell on anxieties about the unknown, we are being present with fear and blind to the the moment upon us. We are bombarded with an army of thoughts and worry that we attach ourselves to in a desperate desire for certainty.
Every moment we spend clinging to fear is a moment we are passing up to find security and comfort.
This is the fifth post in an ongoing blog series, featuring some practical tools and activities. Fill up your arsenal and collect your weapons for recovery.
I’d guess that less than 10% of us handle potential emergencies in a rational and calm state of mind. The rest experience something else that doesn’t quite make for the most efficient response – overwhelming panic, nauseous anxiety, stunned shock, blinding confusion, even more blinding denial, or some other lovely category along those lines.
I’ve always heard that slips and setbacks aren’t just possible, but they’re expected along this path on which we’ve been placed.
We can bounce back from adversity or be consumed by it. The survivors will walk away with more personal strength, character and resilience, and a heavier toolbox for future attacks.
Some succinct tips to help keep your head above the water:
Shake off the stunned brain freeze as soon as you can
Don’t waste time on blame and shame
Be gentle with yourself as you come to acceptance
Rally your support troops and call 9/11 on yourself
Take account of your current situation and how it’s both similar and different to what you’ve known before
Collect every tool you have and search for new ones