“When you lose, don’t lose the lesson.”
— Dalai Lama
The cost of admission to the college of pursuing your dreams and goals is pretty high. Problems remind us of how important it is to have a process in places for finding solutions instead of throwing up our hands and going home. The bigger the dreams we chase and the harder we work to reach our goals, the more opportunities there are for things to go totally wrong. Keeping things in perspective when problems persist helps us to remember we’re human but we’re not completely powerless to change our situations.
Here are three things to remember when problems seem to persist and you’d rather not go through the experience:
1. Whining and worrying will only make matters worse.
As human beings, we have a tendency to enlarge our problems and think they are unique to our existence. This is delusional thinking. If we were to eject ourselves from our problems for a minute, we would quickly see that there are many other people going through similar situations. Whining and worrying change nothing. They only make the situation we’re complaining about worse. Spending this moment worrying about the last moment won’t make the next moment any better.
Those who whine and worry the most, find fewer solutions to their problems. It is always better to face a difficulty on your way to your goal than to worry about a possible difficulty while attempting to do nothing. If you believe in something, no matter how many times you fail at it, keep trying. True peace and happiness begin to manifest in our lives when we stop whining and worrying about our problems and start being thankful for the problems we don’t have.
2. Problems always precede solutions.
If you never faced a problem, you would never be able to discover a solution. People don’t become great at the snap of a finger. It takes many fails, missed opportunities, re-dos, repeats, and retakes to get it right. If everything were just easy and all the answers were right in front of us, there would never be any need for us to endure problems. People like to think that everything will be fine if they just look for the answers in the back of the book. But that’s just the thing. There are no answers in the back of the book because there is no book.
It could be that you need to spend more time working on your skill set. Less time and energy spent complaining about your problem leaves more time and energy for you to actually find solutions. If there is a way to take the initiative and improve at every opportunity, take it. Perfect your craft, work at your technique. Begin looking at every difficult situation as a chance for you to find solutions and become a better person.
3. Look for past proof.
You’re not the only person who has gone through a hard problem or faced an insurmountable obstacle. Plenty of people have gone through what you’re going through and they came out alright. You don’t have to travel alone. Someone somewhere will be willing to walk alongside you. They may not be able to bear your burden completely because it isn’t for them to carry. But they can help you carry it well.
Find people who have dealt with similar situations and ask questions. Don’t be afraid to reveal your own problems, doubts, inabilities, and fear. Be vulnerable. It takes courage to tell a story and a double dose of humility to receive advice from others. The more examples you see that this problem you’re dealing with can be worked through, the more manageable it becomes.
“Fortune knocks but once, but misfortune has much more patience.”
— Laurence J. Peter