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Whenever you encounter a difficulty in life, whatever the problem, somebody has been there before you. I’m not out to disillusion you, but however unique you feel in your struggles, thousands if not millions of people have passed that way before you.

That’s good because it means that, whatever it is that’s bothering you, if not commonplace it is at least familiar to someone somewhere.

If it’s an illness that means someone knows how to treat it, if its something less tangible, like existential angst, feeling unfulfilled, or wanting to know the ‘right’ thing to do… there are ways of getting information and advice to reduce the uncertainty, frustration, fear or whatever, because many people have already been there and lived through it.

Dramatising our concerns and worries just gives them more power over us. The opposite of this is normalising. If you haven’t already done so, try it.

 

Latest from the blog

I’m Wrong About Most Things, At Some Point

We shroud ourselves in beliefs that help us feel secure. One of these is that things tomorrow will be the same as they were yesterday. But the idea that things don’t change is a delusion, that is all.

Nothing wrong with that, but it is best to recognise it, and to keep an open mind about what will happen next. The greater our need to keep things the way they are, the greater the risk of disappointment and even neurosis.

Trying to control the uncontrollable is unpleasant for us, and those around us.

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Selective Optimism for Pessimists

There are advantages to optimism that are worth considering, but some people are put off because they don’t want to be disloyal to negativity.

Optimism and pessimism are generally seen as opposites, but that doesn’t mean they are mutually exclusive; learning optimism does not mean abandoning negativity. If that is what turns you on, stick with it.

If you tend towards a pessimistic outlook, how about learning selective optimism? That way you can get the benefits and still be true to your negativity.

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