To say that everyone in this world freaks out from time to time would be a gross understatement. We all see the Facebook rants; the funny, yet alarmingly offensive, memes; the depressing media coverage; and the hilarious skits and videos that try to make the most out of a blatantly terrifying situation.
I would willingly make the argument that there isn’t much to NOT panic over lately. The overall mood when I peruse through social media is that of fear and resentment. There is an overwhelming amount of negativity that seems to be dominating all the positive and hopeful messages that are surrounding us.
But in the pits of the most destructive trials and tribulations, the universe is teaching us a valuable lesson, if we are willing to look hard enough to see it.
The fact of the matter is, there will always be challenges we face no matter how big or small. But the silver lining is that we all can learn to trust; we all can learn to help one another; and we all can learn to make the most of a bad situation.
If you’re sitting there thinking, “That’s impossible, everybody freaks out. We just have to deal with it.” Then you’re certainly not wrong. But if you don’t like when other people do it, you can stop contributing to it.
I’m no saint saying that it doesn’t happen to even the best of us. I, for one, have freaked out on multiple less-than-panic-worthy occasions that include boys, backstabbing, and other pointless drama. When I’m passionate about something, nobody is going to tell me to stop freaking out, no matter how ridiculous I sound. And vice versa, I would never try to stop somebody else from voicing what they believe in.
I’ve freaked out on guys for breaking up with me even though they were doing what was best for both of us (but how could they DO this to me when I’m so awesome!?), I’ve freaked out on friends and coworkers for coming to me with their stupid problems when I have enough to deal with (Seriously? I worked ALL day today and only had ONE cup of coffee, Janice), and I’ve freaked out on my parents for literally just opening their mouths to speak to me (ugh, the NERVE, WHY ARE THEY RUINING MY LIFE?!).
But a very valuable lesson that I learned over the past few years is, we can’t control everything in our lives, we can only control how we react to the different things that have happened.
There are certain situations in my life where I look back and am not proud of how I reacted or how I treated people. I knew there were areas in my life I could improve, so instead of taking responsibility and working harder, I complained, and took my insecurities out on other people.
When I got laid off from a job, I started drinking and partying and would hang out with people I didn’t like, and talk about those same people behind their backs every single day. I started sleeping with multiple guys who disrespected me over and over again and surrounded myself with people I hated. I became the worst version of myself, and even though that might not seem bad to other people, I didn’t like where my life was heading.
I might have seemed calm, cool, and collected on the outside, but on the inside, I was panicking. I would make jokes to pretend that I was fine, but I was always anxious and wondering when something good was going to happen to me, and wonder why it hasn’t happened yet.
So now that I’m passed the jobless and crazy phase, did all my problems magically disappear? No, not at all. I still find myself worrying about the next problem. I still don’t have it all figured out or am up to the standards I want to be. But the constant worrying was what seemed to be causing even MORE problems. The constant hanging out with people who I already knew I didn’t want to be around was blocking me from meeting new, better people. The constant emphasis on what I didn’t have, was not giving me the things that I wanted to move forward.
So, how can you get out of a rut? How can you trust the universe when you feel as though it continuously swallows you up and spits you back out? How can you not complain when one bad thing happens right after the other?
Trust life and trust that everything will work out. React to your problems differently and make the CHOICE to improve the quality of life every day. It’s not the easiest choice to make, but it is better than panicking and letting life defeat you.
I made the choice to trust life, not because I knew exactly how it was all going to work out, but because it always has. I’m still standing here, with this one life I was given, and as long as I am breathing, I want to be making the most of every bad situation.
I look back at the girl who lived in constant fear and wonder, what was the point of worrying myself every day? Why was I consumed with fantasies like what my next job would be, or who my next boyfriend would be, when those things eventually came to me with minimal effort or when I was thinking about them the least? Why did I worry if “this one” would come back to me, or worry if “that one” would magically fall in love with me, or worry why everyone else seemed to be in a happy place when I wasn’t?
You attract the things that you worry the most about. What you focus all your energy on, is the same energy you are putting out and it will come back to you time and time again. Do you feel like the universe is shitting on you? Good. Maybe you have been shitting on yourself and need to take better care of your life. Or maybe you just need to stop trying to control everything, and start realizing that the only thing you can control is yourself.
If you haven’t gotten the job or the man, or life hasn’t worked out exactly as you have hoped, think about what you are spending your time doing. Is it sitting in your house worrying about everything you DON’T have? To me, that sounds like a complete waste of a perfectly beautiful life.
When what mattered so much to me was the life that everyone else was having, I didn’t realize that MY life was still happening. Instead of worry or try to live a life for other people, I made the choice to live my own. Instead of try to get someone else to do something, I just found solace that I have the power to make my OWN choices, and nobody can take that away from me.
So what if you haven’t always made the best choices? So what if you make mistakes? Don’t be so hard on yourself. But do be a little harder on yourself if you are reacting the same way to the same situation, and expecting a different result.
People can take your job, the love of your life, and your possessions. People can make you feel like you have no control, when you want to control everything. But it can never take away your choice to wake up everyday and be happy. Your choice to make the most of your own life is the one thing in this world that is absolutely certain, so don’t waste it.
When I talk to people who are going through whatever their version of rock bottom might be, there is very little advice I can give them to make them feel as though things are going to get better. However positive they are trying to be, it might seem like there is no solution and the only way out is to panic or complain, and then they continue to do whatever they were doing.
But here is the very little advice I can try to give: Stop worrying. Stop complaining. Start healing. Start trusting.
If you don’t like where your life is heading, or the environment you are surrounded in, CHANGE IT. If you haven’t been happy with the people in this world, do something to positively shape someone else’s life. If you don’t have a boyfriend, stop falling for the same guys who have hurt you time and time again. If you want to control a person that you no longer have control over, let them go.
You can make excuses, or say that life is hard, but the bottom line is it CAN be done.
You’re not stuck, you just don’t trust life because life has been cruel to you. But you have been cruel to your own life. Maybe you haven’t been grateful enough. Maybe you made choices you aren’t proud of and didn’t do anything to set them right. Maybe you don’t love yourself and are wondering why you haven’t found someone to love you.
But if you want to trust life, start being a better you, and life will reward you. Have a little faith, and your life will go a way you never even imagined.