I think the first problem comes with that very thought itself. We have stopped striving do succeed in life and have settled into the complacency of just "getting by". We are capable of so much more than merely surviving our lives. The definition of coping is to be able to effectively handle something unpleasant or difficult that we are going through. That is all well and good but let's just say it out loud - life DOES seem difficult! It is filled with ups and downs and there will ALWAYS be things going on that we have to make adjustments to. Life is ABOUT changing and adjusting and growing. That is not really the issue. I feel that the issue here is that we are so focused on the idea of COPING with what we are dealt, that we have lost the realization that we can do BETTER, and that we are MORE than able to just cope with each day!
True coping begins on the inside. With us personally and individually. NOT by escaping the hardships we feel we are faced with, and certainly not through the eradication of the things which we feel caused us a disturbance. No. Only through going inside where all of our REAL abilities to cope, to be balanced, and to succeed in life live, can we begin to address what is really at the root of our discomfort.
To me (speaking from MY OWN personal experience and view of life), when we are not able to find a level of comfort or acceptance at any given time with where we are in our lives and with ourselves, we begin to turn to outer methods of coping. We ALL have them. A big one for me is sleep. I can be a sleep-escapist. Whether the method be sleeping, drinking, shopping, entertainment, drugs, eating, etc, the common problem remains the same - we have not dealt with the root of why we are trying to escape OURSELVES to begin with.
One great way to work with this is for ourselves is to learn to be present and to be able to find acceptance of, and love for ourselves in any given moment. When we become present and we CHOOSE to be kind to ourselves in the understanding that we may NOT always behave perfectly, we free up a WHOLE LOT of energy to be able to handle navigating the changes that we are constantly surrounded with, and even end up STRENGTHENING our ability to effectively handle life!
Just think about how much WASTED energy we expend on lamenting about the past or worrying about an unknown future that we could instead be alloting to improving our lives! NO WONDER we can only just cope to get by - we have given up our birthright to live well through the false belief that we are not meant to and don't "deserve" to, and the energy necessary to do so right along with it! What a load of CRAP! We can choose to remain open to the energy that is available to us at any given time and spend our time wisely directing it towards joyous living rather than barely manuevering through our days.
Coming to acceptance of ourselves and wherever we may be does NOT imply settling, either - in fact the very opposite is true! When we can openly and honestly face ourselves and choose to allow ourselves to BE in whatever situation we may be in, we then RELEASE the need to settle. The energy inside us then propells us ahead! We can begin to look forward to where we might LIKE to go instead of dumping all of our energy into remaining where we already are. We have ALREADY put ENOUGH energy into where we are! That's exactly how we got here in the first place!
So, the next time you find yourself feeling overwhelmed with life and automatically reaching for some outer method of dealing with what is disturbing you - stop instead, and take a deep breath before reminding yourself that it is OKAY to be where you are and who you are! Reassure yourself that all things are transitory and this experience is no different. KNOW that you have the ability to navigate EACH AND EVERY curve life appears to throw at you and release the energy to help yourself do so! When we turn inward instead of reaching outwardly to cope (which is the very circumstance that CAUSED us to become ruffled enough to have to in the first place), we will then find that by living fully with acceptance in each moment, we were thriving the whole time anyway!
Peace, joy, love, and well-being be yours! Melinda! April 2014.