Self-Encouragement & Improvement
Dealing with Uncertainty in Life
When an uncertainty in life makes it hard for you to breathe, how do you cope?
Anything did by force or pressure often resulted in less creativity and authenticity. The result may be good. However, the hidden aftermath is plentiful. Burnout. Demoralized. Felt bullied. Sometimes, you did not live your life at all.
I am a writer who exposes my vulnerability occasionally. Have you read the book on Purpose Driven Life by Pastor Rick Warren? If you do, you may have learned that vulnerability, if attended to carefully, could bring out the best in you.
On another hand, a Hindu monk Dandapani once wrote that small people tend to make others small to feel big. So, don’t be like them.
Several writers do not write anything that put them in a vulnerable state. Why? Because they are afraid of being shunned by readers or being sabotaged by their close ones — to create a safe zone for themselves.
When nobody knows your weaknesses, they can’t bring you down. Unconsciously that became a hidden fear factor.
It took a lot of courage and bravery to speak about personal life traumas or unexpected events. In return, it served a wide range of humanity, where there are people who need it — just in time. One of them is Sister Asmaa Hussein in her book A Temporary Gift.
I am a reader who covers a wide range of books. By now, I think you know that I do not put aside good books or reads from any different beliefs.
When life is getting hard for you to breathe, I wonder how do all of you cope. Maybe you could tweak a little in your next article to share the same topic I am speaking about today.
In 2014, I wrote a book. Joe assisted me in the publication. We talked, and he wondered why I wanted to write the book — about Yemen. At my dire state and deeply demoralized or feeling hurt, I told him things that happened in my life.
So he said:
“You know what? God gives the hardest battle to the strongest soldiers. You are one of them. You got to hang on there.”
I did not sell the book traditionally or beg the world to know me as an author worth giving attention to. I didn’t know about marketing digitally, and to see the sales price rocket high, I doubt it will sell off anywhere. I left it aside.
Through Joe and other strangers around, I got my strength. I realized most of us struggled to perform well in adversity and grappled for ways to cope. Let’s look at it these ways.
1- Meet people at least once a month.
Yes. Go out and meet people. Have a cup of coffee, or you may sit around for conversation. Often we think going out means spending a fortune. You don’t need to spend over an expensive meal.
You may have a drink while accompanying the friend you are meeting. The whole idea of the meeting is the quality time spend over deep conversations. Best done if you choose only 1–1 meeting instead of a large gathering.
In a large gathering, you will not find good attention, and you will not give a good listening ear to anyone. Everyone wishes to be heard. The loudest may get the limelight. The rest? Entertained.
I’m no fan of large gatherings where I can’t focus my time on quality. Attention breeds rapport.
2 — Choose your place of listening ear carefully.
I’m referring to who you hang out with. Even when you turn to someone to pour out your issues, you got to be mindful if he/she is OK with it.
Some people are not open to conversations with problems. Others will start judging you like a freak. The frenemies are those who feel so glad you go through the pain. They feel entertained behind their concerned mask.
Often, I had a few people who doubted those who, they thought were best friends. I had that once in my life. I’m so thankful that I will never welcome her back into my life. Good riddance!
Honestly, I let go of many people in my life to move on. I gained better ones, as a result. You don’t need 1000 friends. A few quality ones are sufficient.
3 — Beware of where your energy is going.
At home, the workplace, or anywhere else, choose carefully, where you want to invest your energy. Be it people or activities.
If an argument is not worth responding to, leave it. I learned not to care what people say anymore. Some people tend to amplify that you’re bad so that the world directs their attention to you. Then, they continue their fake attitude because nobody looks at them.
When caring for others drained your energy, give yourself and the person some personal space.
One of my relatives became intoxicated to me whenever she started commanding around. She tends to vent her anger and frustration. She tends to speak as though she is barking. And I knew I had enough of intoxicated closed ones. I do not need to add another.
Moreover, she’s not supposed to put me as her lifeline, and I’m not obligated to her. It’s a way I learned never to cling to anyone for hope. If it affects your mental health, you got to prioritize yourself. Be kind to yourself first.
4 — If ever you think of running away from God, there is no way and nowhere to run.
Stay. Be still and know that He is God. Even if you can’t feel Him, don’t push yourself too hard by negativity like saying, “Where are you God when I needed you most?”
When you are mentally blocked, you can’t find an answer. You are as good as void of feeling emotions and thoughts. No amount of sermons and preaching goes into your head. What is more into your heart? Especially when things that people say, you already knew it.
Often in the past, I sat with friends who talked about how so-and-so left their care group gatherings and no longer attended services. They were labeled as backsliders.
For Muslims, it is easy to skip prayers. It is also easy to do a slipshod one because nobody knows what is within our hearts. Who knows that broken-hearted sigh a prayer to HIM for help. That is still a sign of faith.
I once had dinner with a Philippine mentor, and we had thoughtful nights thinking the same thing. Even if anyone were to change their beliefs or decide to be an atheist or free thinker, it will not make us run away from problems.
So stay in your faith. Eat, watch your favorite movie, Netflix, drink your favorite coffee or tea, talk to your dog or cat, and anything safe. Sleep and regain your energy. You will return to God because love is not about being hard on yourself.
5 — Find a Hobby or Start Writing
Writing does not require you to have a journalism degree if you’re not going into the specific route.
Writing can be very therapeutic. You may create a pen name or an account for yourself only to pour out your thoughts and feeling. Write daily.
You may itch to add friends, but you need to control yourself. Ask yourself. What is the purpose of your writings?
If you need an audience, you might as well stay put here, in Medium. You may even prepare some scripts for e-book publishing. Worth the time spent than being in a cluttered mind.
The idea is to keep yourself occupied without a chance to overthink. An idle mind is a place of the devil. So choose the activities that interest you and go, do it.
6 — Learn new languages or coding kinds of stuff
Yes, pick up courses.
Languages are useful. You may learn coding or baking and eventually see yourself either starting a business or blessing others with meals.
I gave. I received. Fair amount.
When you try something, never be afraid to see failure. In digital marketing, we expected to fail fast and recover. You fall 5-times, and you get up 6-times.
7 — Have a Teddy Bank or Secret Place for Charity.
Have a piggy bank or coin box or anything you can be creative about. Each morning, make a prayer and drop in any amount. A dollar will do. I remember one of my teachers said:
A drop of money in the coin bank goes with a prayer request to God. The problem with people is that they drop 50cents, but they ask God for a scroll of wishes. Be generous with your God as He is Generous towards you.
If you think the coin box will not work, make it a habit to go out and have a short walk. Give it to the next person you see on the streets who, you think needs it. You can always do this every Friday or Sunday. Or any day.
You may even buy a meal and pass it to a homeless person you bump into like the construction workers by the roadside.
8 — Sleep and Drink Plain Water
Yes. Often, you cannot resolve issues by staying up or brooding over them. Try to get some sleep. When you wake up, you will feel better and think better.
Yes. Drink Plain water. I was encouraged by a soccer player who said Drink Water. He mentioned it as Aqua. I switched to drinking 1.5L of water daily. It not only helped replenish energy but kept migraine at bay.
Do read up on foods that affect your mood and what you should avoid taking excessively. I took bananas when my mood turned nasty. Once in a while, I allowed my cravings for a slice of cake.
As one of my teachers said:
Everything in life must be in good balance. Not to extreme right. Not too extreme left.
I hope these 8-suggestions help. Remember to breathe. Many people struggle out there. Learn to ask for help if you need it. There is a good Samaritan around, always.
🌹Thank you for reading this far. Good night. 🌹