I made the mistake of watching the news earlier today. There were concerns about flash floods, mudslides, and deaths because of the rain. Mind you, I live in Los Angeles, and we have been experiencing a drought for quite some time. This weather was needed yet there are people already complaining because the ground is wet. What I find odd is the surprise people have when their homes flood in areas where homes flood almost every year and mudslides and fires occur in the same spots. We actually have a “fire season” here.
Then there are the news stories about people being murdered. Cant forget those. Then the kidnappings, the rapes, the robberies, the sexual assaults. Next we head overseas where people have been fighting the same wars for decades if not hundreds of years. Diseases ravaging countries.
But then you look outside and everything is fine.
A while back while listening to an episode of Joe Rogan's podcast and he said something that stuck with me. I'm paraphrasing but he pretty much said that when you watch the news you hear all these bad things and it sets you up to worry, but when you look outside everything is just fine.
This is true for the most part. Its not true if you live somewhere that is war torn or there are bodies laying in the streets or you live in a neighborhood where the wrong colored shirt can get you killed. But when you sit back and just think of your life, not the world, you're doing okay. You're at home, work, or somewhere reading this. Shit can't be all that bad.
Its not just the news that wants you to feel bad. It can be the people in your life. Friends can call you and bitch about how bad their day is. I have some people in my life that have heard me say that and are afraid to complain about something to me and that isn't my intention.
I hate complaining with no plan. I don't mind hearing friends complain about their family, friends, or jobs if they are dealing with it or plan to in some way. But when someone is complaining about the same shit for years it can get exhausting for me to the point I don't wanna share any of my problems. Because of that last part some people think that I am totally fine when I'm not. I haven't been fine for years but I get by because I have a point that I'm reaching for.
I know that we all have things happening in our life, but for the most part there are things on the outside that make us feel bad. Problems with our personal relationships make us feel like crap. Its the ultimate version of “its not me, its you.” Too many times we want to fix others problems before our own. I'm terribly guilty of that.
Sometimes we have to stop and ask ourselves “Can I carry this other persons load right now? No? Then I won't.” Yes, some people will think you are being an asshole or selfish, but sometimes that's the way things are. I'm sure you can think of plenty of times you needed help be it money, time, or patience from a friend (when I say friend I am including spouse because if you aren't friends with your spouse you're doing it wrong) and they weren't able to give it. Either way, don't let it make you feel bad. You can't be Superman all the time.
I've felt low many times in my life and stupidly thought that I couldn't get any lower but then something else would happen that would remind me that things can get worse. Over time I got better and realized that if I had quit when I thought I was at my lowest that I would've missed out on the good things that later happened. And a lot of it came from people giving me a chance to gather myself and help myself out. Helping me pay rent for a little bit so I could focus on doing it myself sooner rather than later. Taking me out to dinner when I had less than $20 to my name (or as I like to call it “last week”). Or just calling to see how I was doing.
Here's the fun part.
I know people that are going through tough times and I have not reached out to them. Totally hypocritical, but I have my reasons. Mostly because they are comfortably miserable. They have kept themselves in a hole for so long they have set up camp. I like talking to the ones that are fighting to get out of the situation they are in. That don't accept that the terrible way they feel is a permanent state. The ones that don't let the world dictate their mood for the day.
Every single one of you reading this has the ability to make yourself better today in some small way. Be it doing an extra push up in the morning. Having one less bag of chips. One less glass of wine. Taking five more minutes to talk to your partner. Calling a friend and letting them know you appreciate them. Removing someone who does nothing but inhibit your happiness. Driving a little slower. Asking your child about their day. Or just being honest with someone you have been lying to.
While everyone may want you to feel bad, there's no need for you to help them out. And stop watching the news. That shit ain't healthy.