The first steps to take when the unexpected happens
The unexpected can happen at any time, without warning and we’re not always prepared, particularly in the event of a health crisis. The first steps you take when the unexpected happens can make a big difference to how you get through a challenging time.
When life throws you a curveball, your first instinct may be to panic. Rather than taking immediate action, give yourself time to get beyond the initial shock and take stock of your situation and evaluate your options. Allowing time to process the news, the implications, and your emotions will enable you to gain perspective and improve your ability to make the right decision going forward.
Talk it Through
Reach out to someone you trust and can rely on, apart from your family or loved ones, to talk through your thoughts and fears in confidence. A problem shared with a friend can make your situation feel less daunting and ease some of the stress and anxiety you may be feeling. They may be able to help you see things a little differently with a level head and offer up suggestions you hadn’t considered.
Enlist Help When the Unexpected Happens
Everyone hates asking for help. You don’t want to be a burden, you’re afraid of appearing weak, surrendering control, or your belief in self-reliance makes you feel like a failure.
Often we don’t know how to ask for help, or ask the wrong people and experience a stinging rejection. To avoid this scenario, allow someone else who’s willing, to coordinate support on your behalf.
It’s important to recognise that sometimes you just can’t do it all on your own. And nor should you. Save your energy for getting through what’s in front of you rather than on the mundane everyday things where people who want to help can feel good at doing so. Allowing this extra support will enable you to have the strength to push you through the hard times.
Without the darkness, we’d never be able to see the stars – Stephenie Meyer
Focus on the Positive
Sometimes it hard to see any upside during a health crisis and the last thing you want to hear is someone telling you to remain positive. However there is something to be said about directing your mind to something positive, no matter how small. A sunny day, a child’s laughter, the birds chirping. It helps to divert the negative mind chatter, which just encourages catastrophising, imagining worst-case scenarios, and damaging ‘what ifs’ that can compound your fears.
Trust Your Ability to Get Through
Think about the things you can control and focus your attention on that. Sometimes we don’t realise how strong we really are when we need to be. Trust in yourself and your ability to overcome the obstacles and challenges that lie ahead.
Life is in constant motion, and there will be more good times and not so good times and just remembering that your track record for getting through the difficult times has been 100% to date can provide hope that this, too, shall pass.
Swathe.me is a free direct support platform which helps takes the fear and intimidation out of asking for and receiving help from people who care and who want to help. Create a list of tasks that would be helpful right now and share it with those who want to help to make your every day better during a difficult time.