Step Out of What You are Stuck In!

02.01.24 04:52 PM Comment(s) By Charmaine

Do you ever get caught up in "What is!"?

"What is" is what is happening in your life at the moment. It could be the weather: raining, snowing, too hot, too cold. It could be your job: your boss, co-worker, the work, the pay. It could be your relationship or your life. It could be politics, neighbours, other people, other countries. It could be any one of many other things that you have no control over. Some, or all of these things are happening all the time.

I was so stuck in “What Is,” I found it impossible to see “What Could Be.” It took me a long time to realize what I was doing with these things that happen all the time. And it still happens on occasion, although I am able to catch myself sooner. 

Sometimes I get so caught up in what is, I get angry, frustrated, hurt, sad, depressed. And when I do, I react with those emotions, yelling, crying, banging, and withdrawing. I don’t like the way things are. I hate it! I want things to be the way I want them to be. I don’t want them to be the way they are. Have you ever felt that way? So what do I do about it? What do you do about those things?

I used to hold myself stuck in that misery by witching (with a B), moaning, and whining about what is and how I wish it were different. I would witch to anyone who would listen, and some who had to listen. I would bring it with me in the car, cursing the situation, take it home with me, bring it to family and social gatherings. At the time, I thought, “If I didn’t have this crappy life to witch about, I’d have nothing to say.”

I was constantly asking “Why?” Why does it have to rain? Why did that happen to me? Why doesn’t he treat me better. Heck, I even used to threaten the weather: “It’d better be nice for MY event or else. 

What the heck did I think I was going to do about it if it didn’t meet MY expectations? Well, I’d get mad, or sad, or frustrated and I would curse, cry, and be downright miserable to myself and everyone else. Sound familiar?

What were the results MY reactions were having? Did they change anything? Did it stop snowing last Christmas so my family could visit? Did my reactions change anything when COVID put us into lockdown? No!

Does witching and whining, anger, or tears, your being in a bad mood do anything to change “What is”? No! The only thing it does is hold you stuck in those useless and destructive emotions. 

Step One: Learn to notice how you are feeling. Many times our emotions are conditioned reactions. They are how we were taught to react to “what is”. This often includes impotent anger, helpless tears, frustration, or checking out. Notice what you are feeling and how you are reacting.

Step Two: Notice what you are saying to yourself. Is what you are telling yourself making you feel better, or worse? Is feeling this way changing “what is”, or affecting “what is” in anyway? Could you choose to feel differently about this?

Note: There are times when you have to feel those feelings, to feel their effect on you, or to work through them, be they anger, sadness, or grief. Please do not push your feelings away. Marisa Peer, Therapist, shared a quote from, I believe a psychiatrist, that said something like, “A feeling must be felt until it no longer needs to be felt.” Feel what you are feeling, but don’t stay stuck in it.

At times, I have to work through my feelings of anger and a great way for me to do so is with angry cleaning. It dissipates the anger and the house gets cleaned. Sometimes, you may need to step away from a situation for a time to feel what you are feeling until you have regained some control. This is true for sadness and tears. You may have to step away to let the tears fall so you can gain control and see things differently. Feelings must be felt. 

Acknowledge it, feel it, where do you feel it in your body, ask it, “How does this emotion serve me?” I find journaling to be a powerful way to answer that question. I write through the feeling until I find myself beginning to see what I can do to change the way I feel.

Step Three: Give yourself permission to look for something to be happy about. I discovered, after many years, that all that witching, whining and moaning had become a habit that was actually creating more and more misery.

I chose to stop fighting what is. I started with winter. It was a battle I could not win. I bought myself some snow pants so I stay warm when I have to be out in it for long. I enjoy playing in the snow with the grandchildren, or visiting a barn with a friend, or sitting in a patch of sunshine on a cold day. I even enjoy walking on a cold winter morning.

I chose to stop fighting the rain and I bought an umbrella. I chose to stop witching about my relationship and start working on it by speaking up about what I want. I learned to be grateful for the people in my life who had passed on by cherishing the good memories and experiences, and lessons.

Stop fighting “what is” and start looking for ways to change it, if you can, or accept it, if you can’t. It will make a great difference to how you feel about your life.

You can choose to find a spark of happiness that, with time and practice, you can fan into a flame that will have you feeling better about yourself, about life, and about your tomorrows. You will begin to find solutions to what's bothering you and you can help yourself begin to enjoy “what is”.

One of the most important things I learned, a long time ago, from my grandchildren is to look for, and share good things. At bedtime, I would ask them to tell me three good things from the day – something good to sleep on – and one good thing for tomorrow to look forward to. When we start looking for the good that is in our life, we find it.

Which feels better: Looking at the good, or witching and whining about “what is” wrong with life? When you feel better you see a brighter future. You see possibility where you used to see impossibility. That allows you to take your next step into making a better life for yourself and those around you. Isn’t it time to Step Out of “What is”?


Share -