Yes, You Will Be Happier If You Stop Thinking Life Happens To You
Updated: Mar 1, 2022
How a "for you" attitude will change your life
It’s easy enough to feel life happens to you, but real freedom comes from embracing the “for you” attitude.
The most obvious and recent example is the pandemic. Not one person has been unaffected by this global occurrence. That is a unique situation, in which everyone experiences a life-impacting event at the same time.
The degree of impact happens at varying levels, depending upon where you live, your family situation, and the type of work you do. This in turn will affect how much resilience you need to cope with the changing circumstances.
Resilience is the bridge taking you from a victim mentality of events happening to you, to choosing to take control by deciding how the experience exists for you to learn and grow.
The “for you” view is one of choice and specifically one of personal growth. It’s how you learn to lean into the insights to be gained for your personal benefit.
It’s possible that the pandemic might be the first thing that you’ve had to face that’s upended your life. If it is, you might be tired from all the emotions it pulls out of you. From fear and worry to anxiety and sadness. These are emotions none of us want to have or stay in because frankly, they’re exhausting.
This is why when you decide that you’ll treat a situation differently, grow from it and find new ways to cope, you’re able to find the freedom found in the “for you” path.
Words Matter. How You Frame Something Matters. To Feel Better, Change Both
Early on during the pandemic, when I heard people refer to “the struggle of this challenging time” I rejected it. Not because I was ignorant to the reality, but because life has taught me that words matter. How you frame something matters. The more you repeat the sentiments of “struggle” and “challenge”, the easier it is to feel defeated, without choice and all those soul-crushing feelings.
This is not to say don’t have the feelings, but rather have them, acknowledge them and then decide what’s next.
My knowledge of how to survive and even, ultimately find greater peace, balance, and harmony didn’t come from a theory, but through lived experiences of what I call The Big D’s.
Death, divorce, and disease.
Yes, I’ve experienced all of these and from them, found the skills and knowledge that have allowed me to weather the pandemic and even find and create unexpected gifts. But you can only do that once you embrace the “for you” concept.
Has the pandemic or everyday life brought you unwanted change? Maybe one of the Big D’s?
Please know that whatever your experience, things can get better. Yes, when any of The Big D’s arrive at your doorstep, life as you know it, changes. And yes, you’re going to feel all those things that you wish you didn’t have to. But! How long you feel them before moving into a more empowered state is entirely up to you.
This isn’t to suggest that it’s easy, sometimes you need a reminder. Like a friend gave to me recently.
How You View A Situation Will Change How You Feel
While talking about an impending locale change for my significant other, leading to a (temporary) long-distance relationship, my friend could see that I’d misplaced my “for you” belief system.
It wasn’t even one of the Big D’s, really just a ….”small d” …. situation. But, you know, I got stuck because I’m human, and was skating around the edges of a poor me, pity party. Until that is, she reminded me that this separation could have positive aspects. That this was or could be a “for you” opportunity.
And of course, she was absolutely right.
Since then, I’ve reframed this current experience and found within it so many good things in my current reality and the one I know I want to create. Things like connecting with more of my friends, giving more thought to courses I can create or want to take, reading more, taking long walks, and chatting with more people as I do.
That shift brings daily moments of joy.
This isn’t because the situation has changed, but my view of it.
This leads me to the final thought for today.
If you’re dealing with any of the Big D’s, are you able to find the “for you” options?
What one thing can you look at just a little differently and see how it’s making a positive difference for you in your understanding of yourself, the situation, or of how you might craft some part of your life differently?
If you are willing to embrace the “for you” attitude, you’ll find what a happiness game-changer it is. Taking ownership of your attitude will open doors and opportunities that a victim attitude never will. If you've got a story about how shifting your attitude worked in your favour, please leave a comment.