When Life (Or Death) Happens:: Do you deal or do you avoid?

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“I thought I could describe a state; make a map of sorrow. Sorrow, however, turns out to be not a state but a process.”

C.S Lewis, A Grief Observed

I have not written a post in ages and it is not because I could not think of any issues to write about. I am not going through a season of writer’s block.

Life happened. Death happened.

A friend that we had been praying for as a church passed away. When I heard the news I was shocked. My friends and I spoke about how sad we were, how young she was and how the family must feel. But then a few minutes later the topic of conversation changed and we went on as normal, I updated my status on Facebook, tweeted and retweeted.

Isn’t that a little bit disturbing? I thought it was. And I realised that when life happens, when bad things happen, my default way of dealing with things is avoidance. Social media, shallow conversation, work and TV are all avenues of avoidance for me, the places I go to escape reality.

So a few weeks ago I decided that when life happens, I am going to let it. I will not just go on as usual: tweeting, liking and blogging. I will stop and feel things. I will deal.

Why deal?

What I call ‘dealing’ is what someone else might call ‘processing’. So, why process the stuff that happens in your life, particularly the bad stuff? ‘Process’ is defined as: “Progress, advance.” I think that that is really powerful. People who know know how to deal are people who are growing, maturing and moving forward. And people who are avoiding are not. Avoiders move around an issue in circles and it does not matter how hard they try to move on, they cannot move forward or see past that things that they are trying to avoid.

When life happens let us learn how to deal. Even if that means taking some time away from social media or forcing ourselves to talk to someone who can help us process what’s going on.

It’s time to deal with that thing you’ve been avoiding, it’s time to move forward.

Thanks for reading.

shula.

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