As a coach / mentor, often times people seek out my help and mentoring when they are in a really bad place in their lives.
Often times they tell me about a whole list of things that have “gone bad” for them recently, and how their “bad luck” streak just keeps getting worse and worse.
When we get ourselves into a situation where things aren’t going well, and before we can get past the FIRST challenge that popped up another challenge pops up, it may start to feel like we’re on a downward spiral…
… and the reason it seems that way is because in those situations we ARE in a downward spiral!
Pretending like we are not, isn’t going to solve the challenge.
When people get into a downwards spiral, what I usually find is that they are focusing 95% of their attention on all the negative things going on in their lives, and refusing to see any benefits to their situations.
In essence, something happens which they choose (usually subconsciously) to see as “negative” and then they FOCUS on the negative aspects of the situation, feeling victimized, frustrated and angry.
Then, this anger and frustration turns into a state of “Argh! FINE! I’ll deal with this issue.” and they try to solve the challenge by taking “angry action”.
Of course, when taking action from a state of anger and frustration, usually those actions don’t yield a very good result, and do more harm than good!
This feeds the problem even more, and soon after that ANOTHER challenge pops up seemingly at the worst possible moment.
This of course leads to more anger and frustration, which leads to more “angry actions” , which leads to more challenges.
So what’s the solution?
The solution is very simple, yet difficult at the same time.
The only way to get out of a downward spiral like this, is to essentially PAUSE for a moment and to pull your awareness into the PRESENT moment and to look for the positive benefits of your current situation which counterbalance any negative aspects of the challenge.
It doesn’t have to be a huge thing either.
Got laid off or fired from a job? The positive side might be that you now have more free time to work on your business, or to go back to school, or to find a much better suited job for yourself.
Now, the difficult part is in being able to SEE the positive side in the present moment.
Meaning, if you lose a job I’m not saying that the positive side will be that maybe in the future you’re going to find a better job, but until that day comes you’re still in “Man, this sucks!” mode.
What I’m saying is that you have to find a way to see the positive side of the situation in the PRESENT moment, right now, regardless of what happens in the future.
A downward spiral is kind of like a small tornado that feeds off of your frustration and anger…
… and the only way to stop it is to stop feeding it energy by focusing your mind on creating another tornado going in the opposite direction.
Find SOMETHING to be positive about right now, and then amplify that a little bit more…
.. and then a little bit more…
… and then a little bit more…
The hard part is not allowing your mind to jump right back into the negative side which is what it’s going to want to do.
The truth is, is that we’re ALL always in a spiral, either going UP towards our dreams, or going DOWN towards anger, frustration and depression.
Which way you’re going is entirely up to you, especially during times when it doesn’t feel that way.