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Message Subject Does it feel like your life is going in the wrong direction???
Poster Handle Anonymous Coward
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You know I am going to chime in and say that this is dandy, but some of us are in situations beyond our control. It is said that you cannot control anything except your reaction to something.

But I'd like to see someone have a positive cheerful reaction to going, say, to court where an ex is charging you with contempt on trumped up charges. Or you can't sell a home and start your simplified life because the economy is tanking. Or your employer has it hanging over you that despite your fine job performance your job might not be there in a few months due to seniority issues.

There are some real practicalities in life that just suck. Many of us are awake enough to want to simplify and streamline but are bogged down by the remaining fallout from failed relationships, economic armageddon, family obligations (caring for sick/older relatives).

It's not all about choice. Sometimes you have no choice. And don't tell me "well change how you feel or think about it." Because caring for a sick, elderly person sucks for everyone involved. You feel bad, they feel bad. You can say "oh, turn that frown upside down. You are helping someone. Blah blah blah." But it hurts seeing someone you love in demise day after day.

A few of us have the RIGHT to be upset about how the path of life is going. Honor us as we fight to change our situation by not telling us to buck up, but rather by saying "I feel for you, brother. I hope it gets better soon."
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 31735474

If you went to the Doctor tomorrow and were told that you were terminally ill and only had a few months to live, how would that change your perception of these 'problems' that you highlighted? Would they still have the same level of control & influence over your state of being that they do now?

If you had to reconcile with your impending physical depature from this particular lifetime, would you still be consumed by your failed relationship, your issue at work, or your trouble selling your home? Would these issues still be your #1 priority in life as far as where you should be directing your limited conscious energy & attention?

This is not to say that you can just flip a switch and no longer care about these 'problems'. I'm just providing an example for you how your perspective can be radically different when you consider a different context than the one which you are operating with now. When we approach death, we have to let go of these limitations of the physical world that bind us. Letting go of these physical limitations helps open up our awareness to what holds true value & importance. The thing is though, you don't have to be dying or be terminally ill to move in this direction. You can approach this mindset while you are still healthy.

You are right in that we cannot always control our external circumstances - but we absolutely can control how we react and respond to these circumstances. You don't have to view them as threats to the very core of your being. You are not your job title, nor your martial status, nor your living arrangement, nor your physical body when it comes to the larger context of your existence. All of those things are not you, they are only experiences you are enduring through. Try and view these circumstances not as a threat to who you are, but as 'inconveniences' or even 'challenges' that you are experiencing and hopefullly learning from in the process.

Changing how you feel can be a very slow and gradual process, but you can absolutely make significant process if you stay focused. Take it a little bit at a time. You'd be surprised at how modifying your perception can completely change your response/reaction to your situation, even when your external circumstances remain unchanged. I've found the best way to alter your perception is to continually ask yourself questions to challenge yourself on your current feelings and understanding of the nature of 'things' in this lifetime. I'm talking about serious contemplation & introspection here.

I'd say give it a shot because what do you have to lose?


If I was told I was terminally ill tomorrow I would be 100% screwed. Not because of my impending death: who cares about that. Who would take care of my mother? Who would help my son who still needs help? I cannot afford decent insurance. My savings have been exhausted due to circumstances beyond my control.

The LAST thing I'd be thinking about and worried about is ME. I don't have that luxury. Maybe people who have money, family to take care of them, friends with the means to help have that. But I don't. If you do, then lucky you. But until you have stood in my shoes don't say that.

What about that beggar dragging along the streets with no arms and not sure if he can make it 2 more days without food. What if a doctor told him he had a terminal illness. He would probably high five the doctor. But he would not be doing that, because poor people don't count. See what I'm saying? I have terrible demons and stresses due to my situation yet I am better off than that beggar. However, he would understand me in that my hands are tied. Not as tightly as his, but tied.

He would understand me and we both are not worried about making the "best of each day" because we are too worried about "surviving each day."

I guess what I'm saying is all this self involvement-"look on the bright side" stuff is a real luxury that some of us could not ever have...given our circumstances. That's real.
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