by Mrs. Freud
Time is moving faster and harder. Even the weather is not like it used to be. Kids don´t know how to behave anymore. Politicians: don´t even get me started. No matter how difficult times seem today, compared to yesterday, we always have our psychological perspective of what’s occurring. In any given time there are people for whom the changes are for the worse. There are also people who believe in the good and keep on going. Ultimately, it does not benefit us to know that the present might come out short in comparison to yesterday. We choose to make it through today. It does, however, drain us, especially if we hold the belief that the whole world is on a downward spiral, taking us with it, no matter what we do. This response will infect our thoughts, our decisions and our behavior.
We will scan the news and anything we hear to confirm our belief. I came across a text that described the state of the world like I did above. That text was 2000 years old. Worrying about where society and the world is going is not a unique component of our time. Unless we dedicate our life to an area and are experts in it, know research, facts, results, there is not much benefit from making assumptions about a downward development, no matter what the topic.
As laymen we simply don´t know. What we can count on is that our perception gets skewed in favor of our beliefs. We want to prove ourselves right. We get loyal to this belief without our conscious awareness. It can influence our quality of life, our relationships at home and at work. For example, let´s look at the weather. Unpredictable and extreme, these are characteristics I hear often about the weather. Even unnatural, if weather can be such. It is easy to forget that simple statistics tells us that any average is made up of a bell-shaped curve of events. At both ends of such curves are extreme events that occur less often, and are farthest away from the average.
As laymen – in this example anyone who is not a meteorologist – it is not about answering the question about “whether the weather is getting out of hand,” it is more the question of what do we believe. Fact is that each of us has a belief about our own safety and security in this world. If we don’t feel safe in general, we are apt to believe that the world is getting worse by the minute. What can help personally is to get out of this state of mind and to look at our own convictions, whether they are true and serve us with our own safety, goals and needs.
To return to the example of the weather: instead of pondering whether our atmosphere is being destroyed and seeing proof in every weather occurrence that is not average, ask yourself if you would like to do something different in order to help the environment. Actions are what give us safety and make us feel optimistic about the future. It’s especially relevant when the actions are in areas that we can control, in areas that matter to us. We can´t control other countries, or even other people, but we can do something good today – for our own well being. So, what will it be? For ideas, inspirations and comments visit my blog: www.healthwithtaste.blogspot.com.
Author Sabine Starr is a psychologist licensed in Vienna, Austria, currently living and working in Mission Hills. She has written numerous articles for professional psychology journals. For further information, visit www.starrcoaching.com and follow her blog at www.HealthwithTaste.blogspot.com.
Category: Life Style