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Living in a blame society


When something doesn't go our way how often do we think that it was because of someone else - something they said, something they did or didn't do or because of something that happened that was beyond our control?

Step one in becoming more resilient is accepting that bad things happen. Change is inevitable. And we can't always get what we want, when we want them and have things the way we want them.

i) Unfortunate things or decisions can and will happen.

ii) Hearing No is a part of life.

iii) Waiting and patience is a skill. Understand the benefits of delayed gratification.

iv) How we deal with problems can be learnt and practised.

Step two is to recognise that adversity is not always bad. If it doesn't challenge you, it doesn't change you. We should constantly strive to be a better version of ourselves rather than rest on our laurels.

"A smooth sea never made a skilful sailor". Would you sail around the world on a boat with a sailor who had only ever sailed in calm waters or one who had learnt to sail in all conditions? Who is the better sailor?

Step three is the hard part - learning to control our response to adversity. I have broken these down into categories. Those who know me well, know I love memes and quotes so bear with me.

De-catastrophise

When something bad happens, how quickly do we let ourselves escalate it into something bigger than Ben Hur? Consider how upset or angry we allow it to make us. Does it affect our self worth, make us feel like failures or doubt ourselves or our decisions? Does this train of thought become a habit everytime something doesn't go our way?

Negative Mind Spiral

Out with negative thinking! Again our brain can make this habitual so when we worry or get angry and blame others, it can continue like a closed circuit, leading to rumination, muddling of thoughts and issues with no moving forward. We can find ourselves ruminating over the same issues over and over. We in fact train our brain to go into this circuit and so to gain a positive mindset becomes more and more difficult. But it can be done!

Calm the Mind

Everyone will find their own personal way to calm down and relax. Mindfulness is increasingly popular but exercise has been clinically proven to be beneficial in depression and anxiety. Some others prefer listening to music, having massages or facials, having alone time, seeing friends or just being outdoors.

Goal Setting

There will come a time when you will have to think about what to do next. Is there any resolution to the problem or have we learnt something from having the problem? Some people create a new beginning or invoke change. Many philanthropists have produced charities or education funds after adversity. Resolution or change may take time but having a goal gives us a focus for the future rather than thinking negatively on something that has already happened.

Never Give Up

No matter how many bullets you've taken or how often the trigger of your frustration is pulled, never give up. Hang in there. Believe in yourself.