One of the great things about a life crisis is you get to find out what works. When life is easy and no major challenges are on the horizon, you can read all about affirmations, pray, meditate, firewalk or just read self-help manuals written by big-name gurus. Then life throws you a major health challenge, the end of a relationship, the death of somebody close to you and an unexpected job loss. Now what?
Will you turn to a book, seek professional help, and meditate some more or just fall apart at the seams? This is when you get to find out what really works and what doesn’t. Here are a few ideas that have worked time and time again for people who wanted to turn their lives around after experiencing a life crisis.
Tactic 1 – Run Toward, NOT Away If there is no growth without discomfort, why do so many people run away when things become uncomfortable? They avoid public speaking, they panic when the partner they know is wrong for them threatens to leave and they beg to keep the job they don’t even like. When my father was diagnosed with a terminal illness and when my marriage ended, I was taking the situation to the end and imagining myself coping. Well, not just coping but moving on with my life and being happy. Everything must come to an end and real peace of mind comes when you accept this.
Tactic 2 – Come Back to the Center The center is the core of YOU, where you sense all your feelings and experience your emotions. A Course in Miracles says that we are never upset or angry for the reason we think. When I lost the job I hated, looking back I wasn’t really upset about that after all, I was frightened that I would end up broke and destitute. I had become comfortable in my crappy job. If you come back to your emotional center and dig deep into the emotions you are feeling, you will eventually realize that it all comes back to the same fear—the fear of death.
Tactic 3 – Do What You Don’t Want to Do During a life crisis, you will be tempted to crawl into your bed and pull the sheets over your head. You may even want to turn to alcohol, drugs, food or something else to help numb the pain. Instead, do this:
- Feed your body fresh, organic food
- Exercise every day, even if it is just walking
- Read books that inspire you
- See a comedy show and laugh
If you have some spare cash, get a nice haircut and treat yourself to a new outfit. The temptation will be to neglect yourself, but you must do the opposite and invest in yourself.
Tactic 4 – Avoid Pity Parties Your friends and family will not want to see you suffer and at times like this, you will be thankful for a support network. When I was having my major crisis, I would spend every night on the phone with friends and relatives talking about what I was going through. Here’s the thing though; is talking about how terrible you feel helping you at all? Sometimes we can fall into the trap of becoming a victim in the story of our life. If you can, share your problem with a professional counselor or hypnotherapist who is there to help you move on with your life. Spend the time with your family and friends doing fun stuff.
Tactic 5 – A Full Life Is…? Do books change your life or just change the way you look at your life? Either way, a book that had a profound effect on me is ‘The Road Less Travelled’ by M. Scott Peck. The first line of the book reads ‘Life is Difficult.’ Does that sound obvious to you? You could have knocked me down with a feather when I read that short sentence. Of course, but then when did we buy into this notion that life was supposed to be all roses? Maybe it is the movies or TV that makes us think this way. If you live a full life, then you will experience great suffering but also great joy. This is life and it is how it is supposed to be. You will lose friends, have health challenges, have your partner walk out on you, but you will also love, travel and meet some very special people who touch your life. Enjoy the ride.
Paul Browning is a writer, Internet marketer and survivor of rock bottom. He is also the author of 7 People Saved My Life, a survival manual for anyone trying to cope with a life crisis.
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