Coping tools to make life more palatable
Most of us, as we have matured in life, have developed ways of coping with little daily upsets and disappointments. Having heard the adage early on that life is not a bed of roses, we learned to adapt and carry on.
A review, however, of our own coping skills and those that others have found is always helpful in making life a little more palatable and pleasant.
• Be good to yourself. Although you may be upset with yourself about things you have failed to do or have not done well, find some time to do something that you really enjoy. It may be taking a walk, reading a book, seeing a movie, or visiting with a friend. Tell yourself that you did the best you could do under the circumstances, and tell yourself at least one thing you learned from the failed experience.
• Get plenty of rest. A rested mind is a brighter mind. If you have trouble sleeping, a warm bath and a glass of milk before bedtime often improves the quality of sleep. Although the amount of sleep varies for many individuals, 7 to 8 hours is usually recommended for everyone.
• Seek friendship. Ask your friends and family to support you by listening to you if verbalizing your hurt will help.
• Help somebody. Moving away, outside your disappointment, and reaching someone else will make you feel needed, will fill your need for love and belonging. No task is too small to be considered unwelcome. Volunteer work in the community or simply helping a neighbor will brighten your day.
• Indulge in a hobby. Pursue some kind of recreation away from your normal workday. Often the recognition that comes from achievement in an avocation restores one's self-worth.
• Be yourself. Quit trying to be like anyone else. Be thankful for your uniqueness and your individuality. Be thankful for your talents and gifts. No other person has your identical qualities.
• Laugh a lot. Laughter is a great tension breaker and when one sees humor in a situation, feelings generally improve. Humility and laughing at yourself restores your perspective.
• Be patient. This too shall pass.
Ralph Waldo Emerson said: Finish each day and be done with it. No doubt some blunders and absurdities crept in. Forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day. You shall begin it well and serenely.
Copyright c 1996 Harold H. LeCrone, Jr., Ph.D.