“No matter what kind of challenges or difficulties or painful situations you go through in your life, we all have something deep within us that we can reach down and find the inner strength to get through them.”
– Alana Stewart
Ups and downs, rises and falls, rain and shine, joy and sorrow, day and night- this is how people define life: a series of events, sometimes jolly, sometimes painfully full of sorrow. Well, that is what life, as we know, is.
There come many situations in life which we can classify as difficult. A wise thing to do is to be prepared to face the difficult times in our lives. These times usually affect us deeply on a psychological level and could potentially damage our lives.
Being prepared for these times could help us to improve how we live our lives. Being prepared to face the challenges is what it means to learn and grow.
The idea is to make the best out of everything life throws at us. Remember, most of these situations are not under our control. So the logical method to deal with these circumstances is to accept and move on.Advertising
Here below we discuss about some of the tough situations we come across in our lives and how we can best deal with them.
1. Quarter-life, midlife crisis
As we age, we see ourselves changing physically and mentally. So, there come times during our aging process that we seek answers about the changes happening to and around us. After adolescence, between our early 20s and early 30s, we begin to make choices on how to best fit into society.
This transition period could be difficult for some of us to handle which turns into the ‘quarter-life crisis’. The sheer amount of confusion and pressure often leads to situations like depression or potentially even acts of self-harm.
During the process of aging, there comes another phase called ‘midlife crisis’, in between the early 40s and early 50s when we begin to truly feel our mortality. These are times when we have to deal with lots of changes which we naturally, as humans, find difficult to deal with. Knowing that the changes are inevitable and finding the strength to accept the changes is the only way to find courage and get through these times of crisis.
Love happens and breakups too. And it goes without saying, breakups are heart breaking. When all those feelings of love suddenly turns into something vile, it becomes painful to handle.
What’s there to be done after breakups? Accept that it happened for the best of reasons, keep your mind busy doing something productive and know that love happens again. The pain subsides like it always does. Turn the pain into motivation to bring a positive change in your life. (Join a gym, perhaps, and sweat it all out.)Advertising
3. Changing friendship
Being social beings, we seek love and friendship. These are undoubtedly the most important aspects of having an overall healthy life. We simply cannot do without friends because we aren’t made to survive alone. We seek and keep friends to help us grow. So a changing friendship can be a difficult thing to deal with. Letting go of friends and adapting to new faces as you leave behind what you had come to love can be challenging.
But people come and go. This is yet another inevitable truth about life. We’ve all read those cheeky lines on the internet like “Those who want to stay in your life will find ways to do so” and they’re true. Don’t be afraid to accept and let go of people and welcome new people into your life.
Failures are difficult times, of course. They are difficult on many levels. Not meeting goals you’ve worked so hard for, the sense of worthlessness, all the negativity failures bring along- these are hard to put up with. But then again, we’ve heard and read many stories of success after failures, stories of what patience and perseverance can deliver. So we know the best thing to do during these times is to find inspiration and push through.
Marriages takes a lot of effort to function well. We’ve witnessed many failed marriages leading up to divorce and heard the stories or even experienced how difficult the transition is for the whole family. Sadly, some of us might have to live through this terrible experience.
While splitting a family is as horrible as it sounds and probably no one really likes the idea of going to divorce lawyers, divorce is the best answer if a marriage is not working. It opens up doors for positive changes in life. Knowing this helps people keep the right attitude towards life after divorce.
6. Losing a job
Losing a job could be devastating, and you might even go hungry in the worst case scenario. And trust me, there’s no rougher time than when you have to spend days on a hungry stomach.Advertising
So, what’s there to do after losing your job? You might feel hopeless at this point but don’t sweat over it anymore. Be strong and make efforts to find another, a better job. Keep calm and carry on.
7. Getting older
You might have heard the story of Buddha and how he set out onto the path of enlightenment; he saw the miseries in man’s life for which he wanted to find cure. The point being: getting older can certainly be a difficult situation and there’s no cure to it. Gray hair, wrinkles, frail health, not being able to do things you once did with great ease, these are some of the things we adjust to as we age.
Well, it’s no secret that there’s no fountain of youth. We are all going to be old if we live long enough. So, the best thing to do is plan ahead for old age if you don’t want it to be miserable. You see, that is why wise people came up with things like pensions and retirement plans.
8. Getting injured, falling sick
Accidents happen and sickness might find us, no matter how many precautions we take. Though, this should not dissuade us from being cautious and trying to live healthily. Recovering from injuries is one of the hardest times one could experience and potentially learning to live with changes to your body and abilities can be a major adjustment physically and emotionally.
Again, keeping the right attitude towards life is the key to dealing with it. The seemingly long journey of recovery could be made less stressful by engaging in other activities that the ailments don’t prevent. There is usually always something that you can find to do if you’re willing. For example, there have been people with cancer have written great novels from their hospital beds.
9. Losing all that you have in a natural disaster
Natural disasters are one of the worst things that could ever happen to anyone. During these disasters, people can potentially lose the people they are closest to as well as all their possessions, including their home: a truly traumatic life experience.Advertising
But like always, we bounce back.
We are resilient enough to come back from the toughest of times and start over anew. The fact that we survived this calamity is reason enough to believe that we are given a second chance. All we can do in the wake of disasters like an earthquake, tsunami or hurricane is to help each other and find hope in this time of despair.
10. Death of a loved one
Death is the ultimate truth in life. It could come to anyone at any time. The sorrow it casts is always tough to handle. Losing loved ones, having to live life without them is the most awful kind of change one could experience in life.
The grief and loss model has five stages of grief: denial, anger, depression, bargaining and acceptance but it doesn’t necessarily occur in the same way for everyone. Some of us might take a very long time to reach the stage of acceptance.
Death demands grief so grieving is the right thing to do but the best thing we can do to honor the dead is to accept the fact and move on when we are able to do so. To commemorate the importance of this person’s passing we could also plant a tree, perhaps.
Featured photo credit: Flickr via farm6.staticflickr.com
Last Updated on March 30, 2020
What Does Self-Conscious Mean? (And How to Stop Being It)
Have you ever walked into a room and felt like your nerves simply couldn’t handle it? Your heart beats fast, you start to sweat, and you feel like all eyes are on you (even if they’re really not). This is just one of the many ways that being self-conscious can rear its ugly head.
You may not even realize you’re self-conscious, and you may be wondering, “What does self-conscious mean?” That’s a good place to start.
This article will define self-consciousness, show how practically everyone has faced it at one point or another, and give you tips to avoid it.
Table of Contents
What Does Self-Conscious Mean?
According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, self-conscious is defined as “conscious of one’s own acts or states as belonging to or originating in oneself.”
Not so bad, right? There’s another definition, though — one that speaks more to what you’re going through: “feeling uncomfortably conscious of oneself as an object of the observation of others.” For those of us who regularly deal with extreme self-consciousness, that second definition sounds about right.
There are many different ways self-consciousness can spring up. You may feel self-conscious around people you know, like your family members or closest friends. You may feel self-conscious at work, even though you spend hours every week around your co-workers. Or you may feel self-conscious when out in public and surrounded by strangers. However, you probably don’t feel self-conscious when you’re home alone.
How to Stop Being Too Self-Conscious
When you’re in the throes of self-consciousness, it’s nearly impossible to remember how to stop feeling that way. That’s why it’s so important to prepare ahead of time, when you’re feeling ready to tackle the problem instead of succumbing to it.
Here are a variety of ways to feel better about yourself and stop thinking about how others see you.
1. Ask Yourself, “So What?”
One way to banish negative, self-conscious thoughts is to do just that: banish them.
The next time you walk into a room and feel your face getting red, think to yourself, “So what?” How much does it really matter if people don’t like how you look or act? What’s the worst that could happen?
Most of the time, you’ll find that you don’t have a good answer to this question. Then, you can immediately start assigning such thoughts less importance. With self-awareness, you can acknowledge that your negative thoughts are present and realize that you don’t agree with them. They’re just thoughts, after all.
2. Be Honest
A lie that self-consciousness might tell is that there’s one way to act or feel. Honestly, though, everyone else is just figuring life out as well. There isn’t a preferred way to show up to an event, gathering, or public place. What you can do is be honest with your feelings and thoughts.
If you feel offended by something someone says, you don’t have to smile to be polite or laugh to fit in with the crowd. Instead, you can politely say why you disagree or excuse yourself and find a group of people who you relate to better. If you’re nervous, don’t overcompensate by trying to look relaxed and casual — it’ll be obvious you’re putting on a front. Instead, nothing is more endearing than saying, “I’m a little nervous!” to a room of people who probably feel the exact same way.
On the same note, if you don’t understand why someone wants you to do something, question it. You can do this at work, at home, or even with people you don’t know well. Nobody should force you to do something you don’t want to do.
Also, even if you’re willing to do what’s asked of you, there’s nothing wrong with asking for more clarification. People will realize that you’re not a person to be bossed around.
3. Understand Why You’re Struggling at Work
Being self-conscious at work can get in the way of your daily responsibilities, your relationships with co-workers, and even your career as a whole. If you’re facing some sort of conflict but you’re too nervous to speak up, you may be at the whim of what happens to you instead of taking some control.
If you’re usually confident at work, you may be wondering where this new self-consciousness is coming from. It’s possible that you’re dealing with burnout. Common signs are anxiety, fatigue and distraction, all of which can leave you feeling under-confident.
4. Succeed at Something
When you create success in your life, it’s easier to feel confident and less self-conscious. If you feel self-conscious at work, finish the project that’s been looming over your head. If you feel self-conscious in the gym, complete an advanced workout class.
Exposing yourself to what you’re scared of and then succeeding at it in some way (even just by finishing it) can do wonders for your self-esteem. The more confidence you build, the more likely you are to have more success in the future, which will create a cycle of confidence-building.
5. Treat All of You — Not Just Your Self-Consciousness
Trying to solve your self-consciousness alone may not treat the root of the problem. Instead, take a well-rounded approach to lower your self-consciousness and build confidence in areas where you may struggle.
Even professional counselors are embracing this holistic type of treatment because they feel that the health of the mind and body are inextricably linked. This approach combines physical, spiritual, and psychological components. Common activities and treatments include meditation, yoga, massage, and healthy changes to diet and exercise.
If much of this is new to you, it will pay to give it a try. You never know how it will impact you.
If you’re feeling self-conscious about how your body looks, a massage that makes you feel great could boost your confidence. If you try a new workout, you could have something exciting to talk about the next time you’re in a group setting.
Putting yourself in a new situation and learning that you can get through it with grace can give you the confidence to get through all sorts of events and nerve-wracking moments.
6. Make the Changes That Are Within Your Control
Let’s say you walk into a room and you’re self-conscious about how you look. However, you may have put a lot of time and effort into your outfit. Even though it may stand out, this is how you have chosen to express yourself.
You have to work on your internal confidence, not your external appearance. There’s nothing to change other than your outlook.
On the other hand, maybe there’s something that you don’t like about yourself that you can change. For example, maybe you hate how a birthmark on your face looks or have varicose veins that you think are unsightly. If you can do something about these things, do it! There’s nothing wrong with changing your appearance (or skills, education, etc.) if it’s going to make you more confident.
You don’t have to accept your current situation for acceptance’s sake. There’s no award for putting up with something you hate. Confidence is also required to make changes that are scary, even if they’re for the better. Plus, it may be an easier fix than you thought. For example, treating varicose veins doesn’t have to involve surgery — sometimes simple compression stockings will take care of the problem.
7. Realize That Everyone Has Awkward Moments
Everyone has said something awkward to someone else and lived to tell the tale. We’ve all forgotten somebody’s name or said, “You too!” when the concession stand girl says to enjoy our movie. Not only are these things uber-common, but they’re not nearly as embarrassing as you feel they are.
Think about how you react when someone else does something awkward. Do you think, “Wow, that person’s such a loser!” or do you think, “What a relief, I’m not the only one who does that.” Chances are good that’s the same reaction others have to you when you stumble.
Remember, self-consciousness is a state of mind that you have control over. You don’t have to feel this way. Do what you need to in order to build your confidence, put your self-consciousness in perspective, and start exercising your “I feel awesome about myself” muscle. It’ll get easier with time.
When Is Being Self-Conscious a Good Thing?
Self-consciousness can sometimes be a good thing, but you have to take the awkwardness and nerves out of it.
In this case, “self-aware” is a much better term. Knowing how you come off to people is an excellent trait; you’ll be able to read a room and understand how what you do and say affects others. These are fantastic skills for people work and personal relationships.
Self-awareness helps you dress appropriately for the occasion, tells you that you’re talking too loud or not loud enough, and guides a conversation so you don’t offend or bore anyone.
It’s not about being someone you’re not — that can actually have adverse effects, just like self-consciousness. Instead, it’s about turning up certain aspects of yourself to perform well in the situation.
When you’re self-conscious, you’re constantly battling with yourself in an effort to control how other people view you. You try to change yourself to suit what you think other people want to see.
The truth, though, is that you can’t actually control how other people view you — and you may not even be correct about how they view you in the first place.
Being confident doesn’t happen overnight. Instead, it happens in small steps as you slowly build your confidence and say “no” to your self-consciousness. It also requires accepting that you’re going to feel self-conscious sometimes, and that’s okay.
Sometimes worrying that there is a problem can be more stressful than the problem itself. Feeling bad for feeling self-conscious can be more troublesome than simply feeling it and getting on with the day.
Forgive yourself for being human and make the small changes that will lead to better confidence in the future.
More Tips for Improving Your Self-Esteem
- How to Build Self Esteem (A Guide to Realize Your Hidden Power)
- How to Gain Confidence and Really Boost Your Self Esteem
- Signs Of Low Self-Esteem And The Root Causes You Might Not Know
- How to Be Confident: 62 Proven Ways to Build Self-Confidence
Featured photo credit: Cata via unsplash.com
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|||^||Psychology Today: Self-conscious? Get Over It|
|||^||Wake Forest University: Embracing Holistic Medicine|
|||^||Center for Vein Restoration: What Causes Venous Ulcers, and How Are They Treated?|
|||^||Scientific American: The Pros and Cons of Being Self-Aware|