Sometimes you are down, going through a phase of seemingly endless struggle, it feels as if all your achievements, personal or professional, in the past were fluke, as if you will never be able to restore harmony in your life again, you remain unsure whether the light you see at the end of tunnel is actually a ray of hope or an oncoming train. You feel listless while life looks lacklustre. Many around you do not seem to care and most of those who do, are unable to help you; you experience loneliness.

There is no doubt that life can have boldly contrasting colors. Almost everyone, if not absolutely everyone, goes through their own share of struggles and challenges. The bigger your ambition, the tougher the challenge, the greater your resistance, the harder your struggle. This is how it works. Struggle is the result of resistance, everything else is hard work. Hard is a relative term, a state of mind. Struggle and challenges are not absolute in themselves, they are relative. The stronger your mind, the greater your ability to pull through any situation.

Some are naturally stronger than others. I am specifically referring to mental strength. Your mindset and your mental strength are the two most critical factors, the most important elements to help you come out of negativity. Negativity kills your motivation, it makes you weak, and almost shuts down your mind. When circumstances are adverse, at that moment, you have a choice to focus your mind on negative or positive thoughts. It is a matter of choice. If you let negativity become your habit, you will mostly find yourself sulking.

In a struggling relationship, if you cannot be without the other person for whatever reason, you had better find a way to be happy, to focus on the positives, the virtues of your partner. If you are determined enough to move out of your relationship, you are perhaps strong enough to make it work too. You cannot fix it by being negative. Undesirable or unpleasant situations can make you feel low and as you get more negative, such situations go beyond your control further damaging your emotional and mental state. It is a catch twenty-two situation. Either you need to move out of the situation or your negativity. Both will accomplish the same outcome. Here are some suggestions for you. They are not mutually exclusive. Try a mix and match, a trial and error approach to see what works best for you.

1. Focus on the positives

You can train your mind to focus on the positive aspect. No matter how dire the situation, it possibly cannot be all negative. For example, your relationship is not working out and you feel down about the whole affair. Make a list of everything you like about your partner, your present life. Review and read this list. It will trigger a sense of gratitude. Positivity will germinate automatically as a result. It is impossible to be grateful without being positive.

2. Accept the situation

This approach will help you feel peaceful. For instance, your partner provides for you and is a caring and a loving person. However, he does not appreciate many things you do. That is his nature. You have brought up this issue multiple times but nothing has changed. If appreciation is that important to you, think of moving on. Otherwise, if you accept the situation, you will experience peace and positivity.

3. Accept your mistake

I do not mean it in the negative sense. Sometimes, it can happen that you end up at the wrong end in a wrong relationship. In my personal opinion, regardless of the reason, one should never put up with an abusive partner. If, in spite of trying everything, his abusive nature remains unchanged, accept that you made a mistake by signing up for this relationship; it is time to move on. An abusive relationship can cripple you in no time, mentally, emotionally and financially, and sometimes, irreparably so. You deserve better.

4. Focus on action

Irrespective of being in a struggling relationship or shattering situation, regardless of whether you are going through a personal turmoil or professional crisis, you can expect very little to change without action. You must act if you want to see change. Action diffuses negativity. When you focus on action, your situation is bound to change.

5. Meditate

Light meditation where you consciously meditate on happy moments, on beautiful times, on bright future, on joyous visualizations, can make you feel positive in a matter of minutes. The impact from any meditation is directly proportional to its intensity, regularity and lucidity.

Negativity directly affects your consciousness, your mind and therefore your body. In fact, it is a disease, a mental ailment. If you choose to stay negative, you will become a stress head, age quicker and contract diseases faster. Unlike most physical afflictions, this one is a matter of choice. If you choose to stay positive, no one can stop you.

When you are down, that is the time to muster your inner strength. The test of strength of a rubber band is when it is stretched. When life stretches you a little too hard, relax. Remind yourself that this is not the end of the world. The One who has provided for you all these years, will do so in the future as well. Remind yourself that your fears are simply your mind playing tricks.

Whether the magician cuts up a woman in two or conjures up an elephant from nowhere, it is all one big illusion. Your mind is an apt magician, an extraordinary one in fact. However, if you do not buy the ticket, there is no show. Regardless of who is at fault, it is you alone who will get affected the most by staying negative. So, for your own good, be positive. Drop those thoughts that make you weak. They are not worth holding onto. Architect your own life, design your own show. Forgive yourself, set yourself free.

Peace.
Swami

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