Think about a frustrating situation.
I did. Then I asked myself: Are some situations just frustrating, nothing to do about it? Am I whining about things? Should I put more effort in? When I was feeling frustrated as a child, my parents would say I could do this or that and when I didn’t want to act on those suggestions, I should push myself harder to make it all better. I hated it when they said something like that. But if I don’t want to push myself, then what?
It’s all about where your attention is going to.
Here’s a situation that makes me feel very frustrated: You can’t easily make me feel really frustrated, but when I try to repair a bike, I’ll get very frustrated in just a few minutes. I start thinking how this should be easier, I should have more money so don’t have to repair it myself, I shouldn’t feel so frustrated, I just can’t do it and it’s helpless, and so on.
I know, it’s very tempting to focus on how frustrating your situation is. But just try to stop yourself.
Stop. Put everything on pause.
I’ve got a silly question: Are you the frustrating situation or are you the one standing there?
You can apply this to all feelings.
When you’re crying are you ‘sad’, or are you ‘you’ that is feeling sadness at the moment?
When you’re frustrated because it’s difficult to repair your bike, are you ‘frustration’ or are you ‘you’ that’s feeling frustration at that moment?
When you are in physical pain are you ‘physical pain’ or are you ‘you’ that is feeling physical pain at the moment?
You are so much more than your situation.
And you are so much more than your feelings and thoughts. Your ego doesn’t like this. It starts to protest and gets in resistance mode. And that’s totally okay. Don’t try to fight your ego. Look it in the eye and keep looking. It will probably lay screaming on the floor like a two year old. Stay with it, like you would stay with the child. Love it, but don’t give in. The child isn’t the screaming. The child is your dear, amazing child that’s screaming at the moment. The same is very true for you and your ego.
It’s always your choice.
You can choose to give in and be absorbed by the situation, your feelings and thoughts OR direct your attention to you. It takes courage and attention. You are so powerful, you can do this. The more practice, the easier it gets. Some get more difficult situations in their live then others. But still. It’s always your choice. And don’t blame yourself if you gave in eventually. It’s perfectly okay. Try again next time.