Every once in a while an event will occur in your life that will force you to press the “Hold” button. Do you let the Hamster go nuts or do you focus and re-center yourself?
Whether the event is a health scare, a denied promotion, a sudden death, a divorce or losing your job, they all have the same effect. It’s a shock. It is something you did not see coming. The butterflies are going wild in your stomach and you’re having a hard time breathing. Or you feel numb. You feel nothing; you are suspended in time. Or possibly, you have bypassed all these effects and you’ve jumped to “I’m OK, I am tough, I can do this and come out on top”.
Which one are you? Are you a mixed bag of some of these? If it happened a while back, how did you handle it? If it just happened, what is your next step?
Take it easy, breathe and do not make any harsh decisions. I had an event last week and my reaction was; I am doing surprisingly ok. Went back to work and mentioned it to my boss. Full of wisdom, he mentioned that I might have a delayed reaction, in which case I should go home if it happens. And it did. But I was having a real hard time pin-pointing my emotions. Did I feed sadness, despair, annoyance, anger, what? I was jumping the gun. I forgot step one, which was pause and breathe.
How do I feel? I am a doer. I like to tackle any problems with a plan of action. The problem with that is, if you don’t know how you feel, how do you know which plan of action is appropriate? Allow yourself some time to pinpoint what your emotions are. If needed, seek the help of a friend or a professional to help your through this step. If you need to retreat into your bubble and feel sorry for yourself, do it but only for an agreed upon timeline. Don’t stay in a weak state for too long. It will drag you down and you could enter a depression. Then it will be so much harder to come out of it.
Take some form of action, however small it may be. Take one step at a time and build from there. Also, I have found that working out is very helpful, unless you can’t. Even a 20-30 minute walk will do the trick. It clears up the mind and helps you find solutions. Stay in a positive frame of mind, it will make all the difference. I am not saying you should deny your feelings: I am saying manage them.
Don’t go about it alone. Enlist the help of the people you are close with.
What’s great about a setback is that it forces you to re-evaluate certain areas of your life that needed it but you were procrastinating. I know; life throws things at you that honestly you could do without. But it’s there! Putting your head in the sand won’t make it disappear. Take it on head-on, and slowly but surely, you will come out the other end; stronger, prouder, more satisfied and grateful that you won.