STRESSED

I AM vs. I FEEL: The Character Separation Challenge

A short read on how to separate your self concept from any current circumstance you may be facing.

Picture this being your life. Your plans of relaxation are thwarted by bursts of panic.

You discover your car has been illegally rummaged at some point in the midnight hour.

You mistakenly lock yourself out of your house and car with no access to your phone.

You witness someone attempting to privately bash your work ethic to a team unaware that you were in their presence.

Most of all, you are pushing to meet several important due to a series of unexpected fires.

These are all situations that I found myself facing simultaneously! No time to process or resolve before the next incident occurred.

My first instinct in the past would be to immediately diagnose the situation.

“I’m stressed.” “I’m angry.” “I’m overwhelmed.”

That is, until I realized how detrimental to my development diagnosing can be.

Here is the reality. As long as we are alive, we will face unexpected circumstances. Our ability to navigate those circumstances are centered around our perspective.

What are the consequences of me stating I’m overwhelmed?

I will internalize the situation as a reflection of who I am as a person. Have you ever been declined for several job or business opportunities consecutively and told yourself that you are a reject?

Think of how detrimental that is to your spirit and self worth. How it diminishes the critical thinking abilities you possess.

Now take that same situation and diagnose the feeling. “I feel rejected.”

What is the fundamental difference? A feeling of rejection is far more surmountable than being defined as a reject.

Feelings are fleeting, but your character is stable. You can always address why you feel you are a reject and implement some new approaches to obtain new results.

Similarly, I may FEEL overwhelmed by recent incidents, but I am not overwhelmed. In other words, there are characteristics of who I AM that will rectify how I FEEL.

In situations like this, I turn to my quote from my book:

“Being in a circumstance does not make me of that circumstance.”

What are you currently experiencing that you have internalized?

How could you shift your perspective on this situation to separate it from your self concept?

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