Life has been challenging, to say the least. It felt like this had been going on forever and would still be the reality til the day she died.
She felt as though she’d been slogging through clingy mud or deep icy snow forever. With blizzards and hurricanes whistling through sometimes, too.
She went on a couple of detours that looked interesting. She listened to a few speeches that sounded reasonable. She tried this and tried that.
The light at the end of the tunnel was getting smaller and smaller. And she was pretty sure she could hear a train in the distance. But was that really a light? Or impending disaster?
She tried and tried and tried. Nothing seemed to be working. Hope was dwindling.
If this feels familiar, you too might be asking yourself “When is it going to get better?”
Unless you know a 100% accurate psychic intuitive, or perhaps you have that most sought-after “owner’s manual for your life on Mother Earth,” there may not be a good answer to that question.
So what’s a good way to approach your dilemma? For this issue that has you tossing and turning all night long? This problem that won’t let you move forward because you don’t know which way to go?
What if you ask yourself some simpler questions, maybe some “What then” questions?
The big question: What then?
You already know all the questions that have been bouncing through your mind like a room full of kids at a birthday party. You’ve been repeating those questions and their negative answers ad-nauseum.
Let’s change that dynamic and see what changes for you. Are you game? (This is probably easier than what you’ve been doing.)
What can you do right now or today that will make your life better? Think about that for a moment or two and you’ll come up with at least one or several ideas. Choose an idea that feels do-able.
Now comes the big question. “What then?”
Hmmm, what did your subconscious mind or your Higher Self offer for your consideration? Was it a total surprise? Or something you’ve been considering?
Now that you have that answer, ask yourself again, “What then?”
Keep asking yourself “what then” until you follow it down the trail as far as it’ll go for the moment. That’s good enough for right now.
The Stumbling Two-Step
So many times, you’ve been stumped by the answer that seemed not-do-able.
So many other times, you’ve done the Stumbling Two-Step: You’ve gotten to a second do-able answer and then stopped because it seemed as far as you needed to go at the time. Then you were stumped again and that’s disheartening.
But what happens when you keep g0ing down the “what then” path until you find the rainbow?
Speaking for myself, when I started using the “What Then” method I discovered that I had been doing the two-step and then getting stumped and disheartened.
It can be complicated because I’m an MBTI INFJ personality type, so whenever I see a problem, I see multiple solutions.
Good part: When I see those possibilities for you or someone else, I can discern the few that might actually work out well and can give you some good advice.
Not so good part: Oddly enough, when I’m looking at my own future… Well, let’s just say that I get stumped sometimes, too, because there are rabbit trails galore! It can be a “can’t see the forest for the trees” kind of situation.
What else can help you clarify your thoughts so you can move forward at least a couple of steps?
3 more questions to help you dive deeper
- What has happened recently that I feel good about? What do I appreciate right now?
- What can I do to make someone else feel better, even if it’s just a smile?
- How can I be kinder, both to myself and others?
Being grateful for what you have sets you up to notice other things that go right, and that can only make you feel better. It goes a long way to helping you feel like something has gone right in your life and gives you hope.
Doing something for someone else gives you a sense of accomplishment and makes you feel like you’ve done something good. It might be as simple as opening the door for someone. What if you make it your mission to open and hold the door for someone every day? Or something else as simple? How would you feel?
Being kind to yourself is monumental. I keep a couple of pictures of my toddler-self on my desk to remind me to be as considerate and gentle with myself as I would be kind to any child. What can you do to remind yourself to be kind? I know it can be hard because many of us weren’t taught to care about ourselves, or to value ourselves. (Maybe you were taught to always value other people more? To put them first every time?) But it is necessary to value yourself, so do it anyway. Pick one thing that you can do and add that to your daily mission.
How can this get better? Allowing the positive to happen
This is one of the most important questions you can ask yourself. It helps you and your subconscious mind look for something good; so to all your answers, add this question:
- Something has gone right and I’m grateful. How can this get better?
- I’ve done something good and feel good about it. How can this get better?
- I’ve been kind to myself. I was kind to my neighbor. How can this get better?
You’ll find yourself looking for the positive in your situation instead of ruminating on the negatives. This will make you feel better without changing anything but your thoughts.
Your mission: Allowing the ‘better’ to happen
You make choices every day. Staying with the wrong partner is a choice. Keeping the yucky job is a choice. Those can be hard choices to change, but it’s do-able.
Drinking bad coffee or tea instead of paying a few cents more for the tastier brand is a choice fundamentally designed to make you unhappy. [rolling eyes] Yep, changing that choice is totally do-able.
A well-thought out problem is half solved. Isn’t that a relief? Now, since you’re in control of your choices, how about making these choices instead?
- Be grateful for the positives you already have and expect it to get better.
- Do something good and let yourself feel marvelous about it.
- Be kind to yourself and others. You’ll all feel happy and satisfied with that.
How can that get better?
(Here’s where the writer’s formula says I’m supposed to tell you about how I can help you make your life better. How about if I simply offer you a gift? You’re invited to listen to my downloadable Unwind and Relax in 5 Minutes Guided Meditation gift. It’ll make us both happy!)