Here’s an interesting dynamic: people always celebrate and party when they feel good. They get some new job or promotion, they win something, it’s someones birthday, or some other event comes out of the blue which energizes everybody. That’s usually when people get together and have a good time.
The other 80-90% of the time–when we feel like shit–we tend to just stay at home. This is when crises, hardship, problems, anxieties, traumas, grief, loss, and everything else which often accompanies life on Earth plagues us, and we can’t think about anything except our specific problems. We just sit around, worry about the future, and stress about what to do next.
This is the natural way we tend to live our lives. But I’m going to suggest that you do something else: push yourself to celebrate and have fun, but do it when you are miserable. The more miserable you are, the more reason you should try to go out with people. All the while, see how you can adjust your emotions so that you actually have fun and transcend the negatives in your life.
All of the terrible things in your life do not have to affect the big picture. Tragic, stressful events are good times to test the limits of your abilities to transcend the bad stuff. We tend to pace back and forth and obsess about what’s going to happen next–but, imagine the power and freedom you could experience if somehow the “worry” could be silenced, and at any time–under any circumstance–you could just have fun?
Worry seems like the necessary, empathic response to a bad situation. Most of the time, when we worry there’s some rationale behind it, such as we are strategizing or emotionally preparing ourselves through anticipating the future scenario. Generally, however, success arrives in a way that’s formless, as a champion of any situation does not think excessively about it–a martial arts master, for instance, simply performs in a way that’s fluid and tranquil. You are more likely to overcome a bad situation through clearing your mind of it, and dealing with the situation in a way that’s within the moment, versus continually anticipating it, and dreading every second that leads up to the final moment.
A true master, I believe, is one who is so grounded in the moment that perpetual worry can be shut off and the moment can be engrossed into regardless of the situation. This is not being apathetic, but it’s having the power to take the reigns over your own thoughts and concerns. While nurturing worrisome thoughts is natural and perhaps part of being a nurturer of others, many of us become prisoners of our own minds, living in mythical scenarios and bad situations which may not even occur.
So, here’s an experiment. Let’s try to just live in the moment constantly. Continually monitor your worry-impulse. When you start thinking about what-may-or-may-not-happen-tomorrow, try to just clear your mind.. Blank it out if you have to, and place yourself firmly within this current moment. Then, go do something else. Go out with your friends on a Monday night, when you have four or five really stressful days ahead of you, or you are stacked with crises and problems. Consider it exercising your emotional abilities.
I’ve had moments when I’ve been at my sheer wits end in life, and then something serendipitous will happen–usually, involving meeting new people or being introduced to a new aspect of life. This is the greatest cure to ANY sorrow. And to seek this out, you must go OUT of the house, even when you feel like shit.