Wellbeing ---- Acceptance ---Living Your Life
Many Problems or Just One
Regulating Your Emotions
When I hear a client's story about them or their spouse, often there is a list of what seems like endless problems of dysfunction. They can't connect to their emotions, fulfil their responsibilities at home or work. They can't connect to their children, or organise their home or finances. The list of problems seems overwhelming. However, the good news is the problem is usually one main issue- emotional dysregulation and when the person is able to learn tools to mange this problem, their life seems to fall into place. Everyone is on their journey and life has never been a race. For some people, it takes a lot more effort to regulate themselves, for others, less time.
Life is the best training course
Everyone is on their journey and there is no better training course you could ever go on than life itself. Life has all the lessons we seem to need, thrown at us, at exactly the right time and there is no situation you will find yourself in, that wasn't meant to be. This is not about blame for when things don't go the way we want or need, or we feel the problem we are facing are just too much, but more about acceptance, that life happened the way it did, as that was meant to be. This doesn't take away any responsibility for needing to do things to get life back on track either, but acceptance actually helps one to spend less energy and resources working out the answers to why something happened. You may have noticed times in your own life when you found yourself in a problem and spent too much time working out exactly why. Part of the reason we do this is because we find it hard to accept the place we are in. It goes without saying, that reflection and accountability of our actions is a necessary and painful part of our everyday life. But we can approach this analysis from a place of acceptance, rather than resentment to get more productive results and start living the life that best represents you and what matters to you.
How much time do we spend working on the past?
There isn't a right or wrong answer. Life isn't that simple and everyone's problems are different. It's something you need to work out.
One question I sometimes ask people is to consider what is helpful. If you feel there are parts of your life which need understanding and exploring- take the time to do that. Reflect on what you have taken away from it. By processing the past this way, you may find you have better tools to make the most of the present moments and plan for the future. Some people completely block out the past and others spend too long re-living the past. With most things in life, the ideal balance is somewhere in the middle. Spend some time reflecting on the past, to understand who you are what's important to you, but not so much time that you miss out on the present moment and the future because of that. Spending too much time in the past can make us feel depressed.
Some people also spend too long living in the future. Often worrying about the future can cause anxiety, but we do need to spend some time planning the future. Again, it's a balance and each person needs to work out what works for them best.