What can we do when life doesn’t go as planned and shit goes down? Why saying no to judgment in those moments will help you feel better, happier and more confident?
In this episode, I share three ways how to stay calm, more positive and confident even if life is like a rollercoaster. We’ll talk about empathy, feeling curious and thinking out of the box.
Feeling empathy can sound like a cliché, but I share how this can shift your feelings in a powerful way. A simple “mind trick” of imagining a child instead of an adult can entirely shift your perspective and you’ll find yourself in a more loving space instead of the mess of your negative emotions created by judgment.
I explore what being curious can do for you when shitty things happen. I use the specific and real example of a break-in into our car a couple of weeks ago. When things go wrong for you, this is an amazing way how to change from sucky to compassionate.
Thinking out of the box is the third way how to react to uncomfortable and uninvited situations in a loving way, instead of in fear or anger. I’ll talk through how we often have many more options than we actually see and how realizing this can be liberating.
I’ll help you to put all this into practice and test it out on the real challenging situation you’re experiencing right now in a live workshop I’ll hold on Thursday 23rd March. Grab your free seat now so you can get unstuck and realize what your best next steps are.
If you want this for yourself, pop in those headphones, let’s dive into these three strategies on how to react in a better way and let’s decide to Screw Being Unhappy!
===This episode’s coaching and action ===
Hard on yourself or others?
- Yourself: look up a photo of you as a baby or a toddler and carefully see how amazing is this being. This is your real essence which is still inside of you, try to access it.
- Others: how would you react if the adult in front of you was a child?
No idea what’s going on?
- Instead of judging instantly what is going on, put on your traveller hat and try to understand more about what is behind the situation. Just like a visitor to a distant country seeing a strange ritual for the first time ever.
Out of options?
- Brainstorm all the options you might be having. Be outrageous, brave and crazy. After having a long list of options, see if some of them are realistic and doable – here goes your earlier unseen option c), e) or f)!
Grab your free seat to the workshop: https://www.subscribepage.com/3stepworkshop
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In episode four we dove deep into judgment, we chatted through how judgment make us feel bad, anxious, scared or any other nasty emotion that doesn’t serve us. I taught you how to reveal and refute judgment, so you can actually feel good and confident, even if life is not going exactly as planned. If you didn’t listen to this episode yet, I’d say head over there and after that listen to this one, because understanding how judgment influences us and our willingness to refute it is essential for the second step. And this is exactly what we’re going to talk about today.
In today’s episode, I’ll share 3 ways of alternative reactions to judgment, which will be based on love and will make you feel better, happier, or more confident. After listening to this episode, you won’t only know how to reveal and refute judgment as you learnt in episode 4, but you will know what to do instead and you’ll able to stay calm, confident and positive even if life is like a rollercoaster.
Let’s do it! In life, we can’t influence many things, the only real sphere of influence we truly have is how we react and approach what is life giving us, be it sweet fruits or bitter lemons. We can’t be careful enough all the time so nobody breaks into our car. We can’t avoid accidents. We don’t have the assurance we’ll get our dream job. This uncertainty is life and this is the normal human experience.
So instead of wasting our energy on judgments and the resulting crappy feelings, that actually don’t serve, us nor anybody else, nor unfortunately don’t have the power to change what already happened, we can choose to respond based on love. Why do I say based on love? What has love to do with this? Love and fear are the two basic emotions that feed into our feelings and reactions. Simplistically said, if the basic emotion is fear, your feelings will be negative, if its love, your feelings will be positive.
And this is exactly what we want. We want to feel good, even if shit happens. Yes, let’s experience the negative emotions it brings us, but let’s not stay with them. Just as the way you wouldn’t keep your hand on the hot stove, feel it and decide to leave it while choosing to feel something positive.
Next time, when somebody breaks into your car (which happened to us last week!), If you have a huge argument with your spouse or you break your leg before the skiing holiday, try this.
Step 1 and 2 is revealing the judgments about yourself, others or the situations that come up (because that’s what caused your negative feelings) and pausing for a moment.
Step 3 is choosing how to react instead. There are five ways how to do this and I’m going to talk about all of them in the upcoming workshop “Confident even on the most Awful day” on 23rd March. If you didn’t grab your free seat yet, please head over to subscribepage.com/3stepworkshop and grab it now. In this workshop you receive a specific breakdown of the most frustrating challenge you’re having right now and concrete action steps on how to move forward, basically putting all the coaching I am sharing in episode 4 and 6 into practice, so don’t miss it!
So, let’s dive in.
The first way how to react is by using empathy.
Have compassion for yourself, your partner or any other person involved in the challenging situation you’re dealing with. We are all unique amazing beings and deserve unconditional love.
What helps is to imagine that the epicentre of conflict would be a small child instead of you or your partner. How would you react? If your son or daughter (or nephew, niece) comes really sad from school after the project he worked on so hard failed? Would you be at his neck saying that you told him so, that he shouldn’t have even tried, that he should ask for help first, that he should have picked a different project or would you try to encourage him, show him your love and maybe brainstorm what can he do differently next time? I’d like to think that you react the second way, yet often, with our partners (or any other adults including ourselves), we go for the first way, which just creates conflict and all the negative emotions you can think of.
When it comes to empathy for yourself, because, as we discussed in episode 4, we can be our own worst and most brutal judges. Let me give you this exercise. Look up your childhood picture, from the time you were a baby or a toddler. Have a good look and keep looking at the picture throughout the day. Do you see the amazingness of the baby? How innocent, happy, and curious was she? That is the real you.
If you find this too difficult or could not find any photo, think of any other baby, your own, your niece or your neighbors’ daughter. Can you see the amazingness in her? Yes? Remember, you were the same. And this is the real essence of you. This is the real you.
When your Judge comes in, think of yourself as this amazing baby, give yourself a break and some damn love, because you deserve it.
The second way how to react is to become curious.
Be curious about what is going on. Imagine you are a traveler in a new culture. Would you be curious about new things that you don’t understand or would you just criticize what you see, yet not fully understand? So instead of lunging into an argument with your partner, try to be curious about what is happening to him. Did he have a bad day? Is this the way he was taught to react? Is he worried about something? Is something triggering his behavior?
I became curious when the thieves broke into our car. I started being curious about the guard’s situation, as he was most likely involved with the thieves allowing them to steal in the parking lot under his watch. We discovered that his employer didn’t pay him for a couple of months, and as a security guard, he didn’t even have a phone in case of emergency. Life in Zambia can be really hard and I can imagine one has to be in a place between a rock and a stone if one opts in for being involved in crime. In addition to being curious, I felt empathy. I felt that maybe he has children or a big family and they struggle to put food on the table every evening. Maybe they can’t cover medical bills or send kids to school. Yes, it doesn’t justify the crime, but you can see, your perspective and feelings shift. It definitely shifted for me. It was inconvenient, and annoying, but it didn’t ruin my day or weeks to come. I moved more to the space of love, curiosity and understanding. Try this. Think of your challenge right now and try to become curious. Journal it, draw it, and be curious.
The third way how to react is to think out of the box.
See the unseen options of whatever just happened making you feel bad. Imagine you are a scientist looking for a new way of solving a problem. You must think out of the box.
When we are in the midst of our problem, we don’t see the ton of options we actually have. Most often, we see black and white. It’s the same way as this metaphor I love using. Imagine a sunny summer day, you’re walking in a meadow, enjoying the bliss. Suddenly, you step into a cow dung. In that moment you forget about all the beauty, all the beautiful flowers around and the idyllic day. All you can think is your shoe in the cow shit.
It’s unlikely you have only option a) or b). We just need to learn how to find the option, c), l) or z). The power of brainstorming, especially if you have a coach or a buddy, is amazing. Suddenly you see unseen options everywhere. You can try it alone too. Remember, the power of thinking out of the box is not in coming up with realistic or neat ideas. Be outrageous, think of the craziest ways, think of the unthinkable. It doesn’t mean you have to execute these, but options will start opening up. You will be freer and in that headspace, you will see that the option d) or h) is actually an amazing idea.
Doesn’t all this already sound more optimistic and happier? In the workshop, we will also dive into the fourth way that is to see the bigger picture and realize what is really important in life, and the fifth that is all about laser focus and the ability to go into action.
Now you know it all, I have shared with you the knowledge that is really changing my and my clients’ lives for the better. Now you have the insight, you probably had a couple of aha lightbulb moments, but yet, there’s still a missing piece of the puzzle.
Unfortunately while having the insights is amazing and feels so good, its not enough for you to create the life you truly want. Yet, having insight is only 20% of success. The remaining 80% is the practice and the power, of mental muscles if you will, you have to build. If only insights were enough, we could just watch bodybuilding on TV instead of going to gym, read books about making money without actually working or getting slim by reading a book about losing weight while crunching on chocolate. We wished!
The practice will give you the power to reveal the judgments, pause and consciously decide how to react, it will make the love-based reaction the new normal. But more about that in the workshop. If you want this for yourself, if you’re tired of being dragged by life as a cloth on the stick in the wind, feeling powerless, come and reclaim your power. Because you can do it. I 100% believe this. Learn how to receive the bitter lemons life is giving you with grace, love, curiosity and positivity, grab your free seat now. Go to subscribepage.com/3stepworkshop and I’ll see you there!
Thank you for listening in today and let’s say together Screw Being Unhappy. Let’s say that every single day, especially when life is hard because happiness is our choice. So, let’s Screw Being Unhappy and say YES to happiness. Let’s go and let’s do it! Until next time, with love, Zuzana