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Don’t forget to send an SOS before you self-destruct

Failure is a given.


If we have any expectations, especially when we’re trying to make a change, they will be unmet at some point. Whether in love, work, our health, something will be inevitably disappoint us, either by the weight of itself or as the latest in a series of disappointments.

Rather than try to keep our chin up, walk over our disappointment and ignore our deep feelings of hurt, I advocate for a quick self-destruct. An acceptance that we need to vent and feel our pain. An acceptance that we need to allow ourselves to shatter in a million messy pieces rather than hopelessly cling onto some semblance of functioning.

But first send an SOS!

As in all good disaster movies and sci-fi episodes when they have to set the auto-destruct, they send out a good old emergency beacon to say to the universe — Shit happened! Help needed!

What do you say? State the fact. Either they’ll have the emotional intelligence to respond appropriately or they’ll ask (or they botch it up entirely cos well sometimes we humans get it wrong).

But I feel embarrassed, ashamed? Would you berate your friend for confiding in you? Well then you are mean! May be you’re a good person, but that is just plain mean! Most of the time though, a good friend (or even a newish friend) will appreciate that you shared your low with them — true friends share highs and lows. These friends will say things that give you perspective and some chin ups. You might not want to hear them. You might feel angry at them for saying so, for not truly understanding what you’re feeling (which might be the case), but they probably also sting because they have some element of truth that you ultimately need to hear and figure out.

But let yourself feel hurt too. Log the remarks and return to them later. They were given with good intention. Say what you need and say what you don’t need.

To me, I call it a self-destruct because in some ways I do want to wallow. I feel entitled to my pain and hurt, and want to forget everything else. But doing so will consume me so I have to send those emergency beacons out that in part say — Shit happened! Help needed! and most importantly — Stop me from hitting myself.


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Originally published at journal.thriveglobal.com

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