OK, your best friends are life-saving rafts in the titanic times of life. They are smart, listen, deliver validation and offer fabulous lines that you repeat in your head to feel better during hard times. Sometimes, in the process of that repetition in the head, you come to believe and abide by others’ wisdom. The other side of the coin for such “comfort blanket” like experiences is we may come to rely on them. You may look for them, so much so that, even if you are perfectly capable of generating answers to your problems, you may only half believe in them and look for others supporting your thoughts. But Why? Or why always?
I often challenged myself to think what if I generate the answers to my own questions? I know myself or my issues more than anyone (granted I am not sand bagged with a giant problem). If I am my own best advocate, why cannot I speak to myself and offer the best options, thoughts and solutions to myself? Luckily, David Burns wrote in his book “Feeling Good” that he uses a double column technique to generate solutions. In one column, you write your problems and in the second corresponding column, you write your solutions. I have done this for nearly 25 years. I found this technique to clear my mind of fog or confusion as I dump every worry on to the paper, generate lucid answer/s to my problem and move on. I wrote myself a solution many, many times. The logic once written on a piece of paper stares back at you, guide you and will serve as solid friend. If they are to do with interpersonal conflict, you may have blinders and need to check with someone I suppose..but if you are honest with yourself and open minded, you can figure out a lot! Believe in yourself. You often have the nuggets, so do not under-estimate. You know a lot more than you give credit for!
See, don’t get me wrong when I say all this. We need people. Yes, all people need people. Healthy sharing and interpersonal dependency is central to intimacy and connectivity. But mental hygiene and clear headed thinking and reflection for oneself are not anathema to sharing. And all of us are charged with guilt at one time or another of agreeing with part of our friends’ story in support and politely avoided telling them some of what you think to their face to avoid hurting them. The point I am making is validating the fact that:
- YOU CAN RELY ON YOURSELF. “YOU” are precious and yours to keep forever!
2. The higher power upstairs has His/Her plans. Leave it to Him or Her ultimately. Thinking that we can control everything is fantasy, right?!
This goes to say, you try, but do not break your back…chill some…lighten up…..Stars align too!
Rest of what you have is icing on the cake.
Great stuff..though we knew this, coming from you validated it. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.
Vijay, Thanks. See the reason I wrote is two things.
1. We always look out for external validation as a default. It is alright to ‘not’ have that sometimes as not always, others have as much time, energy or even inclination to reach out for folk needing validation (despite how awesome others may be). Self reliance is like a well with water.
2. The act of writing out solutions on paper (especially in my younger years, I do it less now) has helped me develop clarity of thinking, or gave me a tangible method.
Both look darn simple, but the important things are simple but need practice more than what meets the eye!
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