Too many of us seem to be so down about numerous situations that happen to us. And whether this is you or someone close to you or not, it is never pleasant to suffer or watch others suffer. But guess what… they do not have to suffer, and neither do you.

We have all heard of the saying “It’s not the problem, but how you cope with it” right? So how have you incorporated this great truth into your life? The answer is that most of us haven’t. We probably read it on some inspirational poster or heard it from a friend at one time and thought “oh what nice advice, but so unrealistic”. Well here is me giving you my spin on this lovely statement in a little bit of a different way…

See the problem is that our society causes us to get so caught up with so much drama and creates so much noise for us; it is very hard for us to hear ourselves and think rationally from the spirit. Most of the time we are simply “reacting” instead of “acting” to what is. We are busy at work, busy at home, and busy in our thoughts. There is so much going on and so much to process that we neglect to spend time with “ourselves”. We neglect to find calmness and peace and make sense to ourselves of the situations we face each day.

It is only when you allow yourself to find some stillness and peace in your life that you can step out of the constant “struggle” and away from the stresses of our illusory world.

It is only then that you start to gain a new perspective on yourself, your life and the things “happening to you”. So before I offer a quick and simple solution read on about the next two syndromes, which are examples and my classifications of how we usually fall into the negative states of suffering from the events or people in our lives.

The “Why Me” Syndrome

Have you ever found yourself in a situation asking yourself “why me?” I am sure you have, we have all been down that road at least once if not numerous times in our lives. But the question I have for you is “why not me?” Why do we constantly need to feel offended and hurt by the people and events in our lives? Why do we constantly and silently hold the thought that we are somehow “too good” to have this happen to us? Like seriously, “how dare life do this to me?”

Do we enjoy these negative states? I hardly think so. And yet so many of us do this on a regular basis. From the smallest to the biggest things, we wallow, we complain, we get angry and sometimes we even have outbursts of victim tears. I am sure you can relate by now to what I am talking about, but here are a few examples to really drive the point home:

  1. You get a flat tire: your day (if not week) is ruined as you now have lost time and money (to say the least)
  2. You lose your job: you are devastated and start stressing about how you are going to survive
  3. Your kids get the flu: you feel sorry for yourself as you sit up to all hours of the morning taking care of them
  4. Your significant other deceives you: you swear you are now scarred for life and will never be able to trust anyone again
  5. Your house burns down: you are devastated as you lost everything

Now if your ego is strong at work, right about now you are ready to navigate away from this article, if not this site, saying to yourself, “how cold and cruel to say and assume such things, these are unfair events or tragedies happening to me, how could she know what I have been through?” But wait, stop and be still for a moment, re-read the questions in the first paragraph of this section, is it not true?

See what we forget, due to all the noise of our society-driven lives is that we do have another option here. There is another way, a better and more peace filled way to live and handle the situations that come our way but only of course if your ego allows it.

The “What did I do to deserve this” Syndrome

The second state many of us are very familiar with is the state that arises out of the “what did I do to deserve this?” question. Normally people start thinking to their past and throw in ideas of luck or karma or carrying Jesus’ cross or God testing us and the list goes on.

Guess what the answer is… NOTHING. That is right you did nothing about it. You did nothing to prevent this situation from happening in the first place. And by simply reacting to it, you are doing nothing productive with it now. Before you jump all over this one too, let’s see how we can turn doing nothing productive into something productive by revisiting the previous examples to get a better understanding of what I mean:

1) You got a flat tire

Start with questions like these:

  • Have you been maintaining your car regularly? or Where you hoping to have these old tires for at least one more season?
  • Are you fully aware when you drive? Do you notice things along your path to avoid?

What if these types of questions do not apply to you? Consider these then:

  • Is life trying to give me a time out?
  • Was life protecting me using this event, from some worse incident?

2) You lose your job

Start with questions like these:

  • Did I like/enjoy my job?
  • Have I been dreading going to work each morning?
  • Was I fully involved in truly doing it the best way I possibly could have?
  • Did I often complain about my job? boss? coworkers? duties? etc…

What if these questions do not apply to you? Consider these then:

  • What greater opportunity has life pushed me towards?
  • Are there outstanding talents or things that I have always wanted to pursue?

3) Your kids get the flu

Start with questions like these:

  • Have they been exposed to balanced, fresh foods regularly?
  • Have you been aware of their emotional health?
  • Is the household environment causing them a lot of stress?

What if these types of questions do not apply to you? Consider these then:

  • Have I been too busy? Is life trying to give me an opportunity to spend time with them?

  • Am I getting caught up with my job and problems too much to make these beings I so wanted my number one priority?

4) Your significant other deceives you

Start with questions like these:

  • Have you been fully present in the relationship?
  • Did you keep an open and honest communication with your partner about everything?
  • Did you often complain about the relationship or your partner?

What if these types of questions do not apply to you? Consider these then:

  • Was I afraid to walk away from this person out of convenience?
  • Is life offering me a way out?
  • Is this person holding me back and this is my opportunity to be free to meet the person that is better suited for me?

5) Your house burns down

Start with questions like these:

  • Was I careful and aware of fire safety at all times in the house?
  • Was I careless with something or neglected to maintain proper maintenance?

What if these types of questions do not apply to you? Consider these then:

  • Do I only find worth in material goods?
  • Did I really lose everything, or did I just loose the excess that was shielding me from my magnificent potential?

No matter where you fit into these scenarios, it is not about being harsh here. Believe me I know first hand how hard it is to look at ourselves for the answers instead of the situation. But ultimately we have to understand that there are no outer forces “out to get you”. And remember “reacting” to these situations will only make a so called bad situation much, much worse. There is always and I do mean always a solution, but we will never find it in the middle of stress and anxiety. The best solutions lie in moments of stillness and self reflection. Let’s now talk about a new approach.

Remedy to get rid of syndrome(s)

The answer to these or any other examples in your life is to start asking yourself the deeper questions instead of the simple and old questions of “why me?” and “what did I do to deserve this?” I am inviting you therefore to not only ask questions, but to ask new questions. Consider this, how can you keep asking the same question and hope each time for a different answer? To get a new answer you have to ask a new question.

Yes it is not easy, if it was everybody would be doing it. And I am in no way being judgmental here about you or this or that situation. I have to keep practicing this remedy myself too.

Ultimately, the answer I am giving you is not the popular answer and not the answer most of your friends will give you, but the one that I know can break the vicious cycle of fear, blame and victim playing. It is not easy taking responsibility and being accountable to ourselves. But what we should also consider is instead of having these higher (and sometimes unrealistic expectations) of life, others, situations or events, why don’t we expect more from ourselves first. See, what so many of us do not realize until we have that bright “aha” moment is that your suffering does not lie in the situation, but in how you choose to handle it or let it affect you.

Therefore remember, things will happen, but only you can give meaning to whether something is bad or good. And only you have the power to choose how you will feel about it. Remember too, you may not control the situation but you are in control of you – your feelings and actions.

The next time someone or something you labeled “bad” happens to you step back for a moment before you react, so you can regroup your thoughts on how to act. And always ask yourself these 2 questions:

1. How do I want to feel as a result of this and how does this feeling serve me?

2. What is the underlying message here for me to learn and grow from?

And by all means this case is not closed; there are so many examples and so much else that can be said here. In future articles, we will continue to explore this topic further and focus on how to minimize, if not avoid “bad” events happening to you period through techniques like “pre-paving” and “segment intending” that authors, Esther and Jerry Hicks, describe in detail in their material.

Your turn – I would love to hear about your old and new questions that you have been asking and how it impacted any situation in your life.