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How Do You Prepare for Anything in Life?

Updated: Sep 28, 2022

Do you know someone who seems to be in a state of constant worry or always seems to fear the worst? Maybe there are times when you are in this state of mind - when you spend hours, days, or longer worrying about something that could happen or continue to torture yourself about something that already happened.

How do you prepare for anything in life to the point where you do not live in fear or spend time worrying about things outside your control?

Life provides us with so many opportunities. Opportunities to learn, build relationships, love, have success, work through challenges, experience joy and happiness - as well as endure tragedy, pain, loss, failure and suffering. How do we prepare ourselves, properly, for life to the point where we can sufficiently make it through the highs and lows, and not consume the time we have with worry of fear?

Maximizing the experience of love, success, joy, happiness, and freedom - while understanding that when something that could all of a sudden occur - something that knocks us down or takes the wind out of our sails or when we lose a loved one - that we don't allow ourselves to become consumed by it. After all, EVERYTHING in life is temporary. The only permanent thing we have is our ability to adapt, grow, and evolve with what occurs during the life we have. Even that is only temporarily permanent - it only exists while we are here. So, how do we adapt, grow, and evolve to the point where we can handle whatever life throws our way?

A few things come to mind that might be useful for this exercise...

• Accept this philosophy as a universal truth - the fact that we will experience many different things in life that will stimulate our emotions in many different ways and that others will not always respond in the same way we do. Just because you get excited about something, doesn't mean those closest to you will feel the same way - pick any emotion...excited, happy, sad, overjoyed, frustrated - whatever. It doesn't seem useful to expect someone else to always (or ever for that matter) share the same type of emotion that you get when something happens...and vice versa.

Practice purposeful meditation - take time out of each day (I have found great use in doing this first thing in the morning) to sit in a quiet place where you will be undisturbed. Sit in a comfortable, relaxing position - and practice taking slow, deep breaths. Work - to the best of your ability - to clear your mind of any thoughts. When thoughts do pop up (and they certainly will initially), acknowledge them and then let them go.

One reason why it seems more beneficial to do this practice first thing in the morning is so you allow this time to be dedicated to this specific exercise. when you do this, there is no reason to think about anything else because the rest of the time you have after this exercise is allocated to think about everything else - which means, for a few brief moments, there is nothing else to think about except for focusing on your breathing and letting go of your mind.

Accept full and total responsibility for - not only your actions, but also in training your mind to be prepared for anything life will throw your way. You know you cannot control what others say, think, or do - you can have but some influence on them and that is all. If the relationship is such where you place a high amount of value, then provide total truth and transparency on where you stand - and in exchange, listen with the intent of understanding the other person's perspective. If at that point, there is no room for compromise, you must decide to agree to disagree and continue on with the relationship in good standing - or if the differences are too deep to the point where it could compromise your values, then it is likely better to move on. If you ever find yourself surrounded by people who don't share the same values that you have, get out...quickly.

Other than that, work toward temperance, patience, and understanding that all humans are flawed and capable of both amazing feats as well as incredible amounts of disappointment. Train your mind by working toward asking more questions and listening more than you talk. It's amazing how powerful this discipline can be.

Spend as much time as possible working toward an occupation that provides purpose and meaning - work that is aimed at benefiting humankind in some way - work that helps solve some major problem that exists in the world. In doing so, you will have less time to spend worrying about all that could happen because your mind will be more focused on working toward the betterment of existence.

If you were to spend the time they have working toward improving life or the quality of life for others in some way - or spends time working toward solving some great problem that exists in the world, how could you ever fail?

Even if you never reach the specific goal/outcome of some major problem that exists - let's say...curing cancer or ensuring every child receives a proper education - being involved in and working toward such advancements is noble and fulfilling work. When we spend time focused on working toward advancing noble causes or working toward solving major problems that exist in the world, it takes the place of time that would or could otherwise be spent focusing on things that cause worry.

• Spend time thinking through and working toward understanding that every situation is temporary and that you have the opportunity to take control of your mind. Great fortunes can be taken away, you could lose your job at any point, a tragic event could occur at any moment - anything COULD happen that causes you to suffer in some way. No matter what happens, it is temporary and it will not last, so there is not point spending time worrying about it possibly happening or, if/when it does - spending the rest of the precious time you do have on reliving it over and over again.

That's not to say that people shouldn't acknowledge their emotions or not allow themselves to grieve - it's about understanding that when difficulties in life do occur, working toward accepting those things that we cannot change or control and that the emotions/grieving - although extremely painful, should be temporary.

We are here for a reason, we are here to serve some purpose. There is meaning to our existence and we must discover what that purpose and meaning is so we can get to work on it.

• You cannot control anyone else in the world - let alone all aspects of yourself.

That being said, work toward controlling how you respond to people and your emotions by doing everything you can to be a good human being. Take care of yourself - your mind, your body, your relationships that are meaningful. So much of what happens in life is small - especially when you spend time thinking about how many people currently exist, how many have already moved on from this world, and how much time in human existence has passed already vs. you as an individual and the short amount of time you've been here. You don't know what someone else has had to endure as they have no idea what you've had to endure - be a good human - let the small stuff go...and again, most of it is small stuff.

Spend time thinking about what it is that truly worries you. Have you ever made it through a difficult time or situation? Have you ever suffered heart ache or emotional distress to the point where you felt your life was in jeopardy? If you have, and you are still here, then you've made it through it. Think about any lessons you might have learned as a result of those difficult times or situations. As the saying goes - "what doesn't kill you makes you stronger". It should never be - "what doesn't kill you makes you weaker". There are plenty of things that can make your body weaker - don't allow anything (or anyone for that matter) make your mind weaker.

That's the entire point - what doesn't kill you (mentally) makes you stronger. Why? Because the difficulties, the suffering, the tragedies all provide some learning opportunity with them - and when you come to understand that - it makes you stronger. Based on that, it also provides you with some resilience which means you have at least one less thing to worry about.

Work toward understanding that you have a choice - in every situation - on how to perceive what is happening. You can choose to look at each scenario, circumstance, or moment as something bad is happening or you can look at the same occurrence as an opportunity to learn - or work to find the good or at least a silver lining within the situation.

Those who seem to have the ability of the latter are the people who others are more likely to be drawn toward. If someone says - "the sky is beautiful" and someone else says - "yeah, but it's probably going to rain" - this is a simplified example of understanding which scenario you can choose to align with. The type of person who works toward being grateful and appreciative of the present moment - taking in as much good as possible to enjoy the little things in life, or the one who is always pointing toward a more negative outlook - never or rarely taking time to soak up the little moments of joy and happiness or at least - the opportunity to learn what good can be found in each situation.

Doing so doesn't mean you will become oblivious to difficult situations or naive that life isn't going to present you with suffering - it's more about understanding that you do indeed have a choice on your perspective of how to handle life as well as enjoy as much of it as you possibly can.

For each problem in life we face, there will always be a way to find a solution. If you were to think about that objectively for a period of time, you would have to come to the conclusion that it is an accurate statement. You may not think of yourself as a problem solver, but if you have ever learned how to do something - even something very basic, then you are indeed a problem solver.

Now, this doesn't necessarily mean you will be able to solve every problem that exists in the world - especially the most complex problems, but if you spend enough time studying, experimenting, and working on any particular problem, you can find a solution.

The critical factor that seems to be most self evident is the the fact that you must believe that for every problem that exists there is a solution. If you don't believe that, then you will easily give up on challenges and will likely acquire more fear and worry about trying new things or taking any risks - even risks that could prove extremely beneficial to you in the long run.

Practice good habits that are focused on the improvement or betterment of your health. If the six primary human fears are:

  1. Poverty - or fear of not having enough money

  2. Criticism - or fear of not being relevant

  3. Poor health - specifically physical health

  4. Loss of love - or losing someone you love

  5. Old age - or fear of time slipping away

  6. Death

...then it makes sense to engage in the practice of habits that oppose each of these fears. The opposite of each fear, in my estimation, is categorized by the following:

  1. Poverty - Discipline of Financial Health Habits

  2. Criticism - Discipline of Emotional Health Habits

  3. Poor health - Discipline of Physical Health Habits

  4. Loss of love - Discipline of Relational Health Habits

  5. Old age - Discipline of Mental Health Habits

  6. Death - Discipline of Spiritual Health Habits

There is much more depth and detail to unravel with the Disciplines of the Six Key Health Disciplines, but that is for another time...

I hope you find this useful.

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As always - thank you!

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1 Comment

I would like to know more about the 6 key health disciplines.

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