look, there is no definite list of things to do to try to prevent yourself from getting hurt neither is there an actual guide book that will help you. more than anything, religious manuscripts merely provide a systematic guideline that is both unrealistic and increasingly non-applicable(eg. homosexuality being seen as a sin, HELLO it’s 2014, following and living by orders written by a questionable figure seems more far fetched) but my aim is to not be shallow about this because understandably people look for answers in everything and everyone; GOD, boyfriends, girlfriends, parents but themselves! so here are some suggestions that could be of use to you, or not, on how to be your own damn saviour.
1. Expectations = Disappointment, so don’t expect anything.
yeah evidently the idea of expecting too much leads to an eventual state of disappointment seems overrated BUT it is the basis of the whole argument of being your own saviour. okay so let me put it in context for you lot.
Khalisah likes Henry. She likes him alot, maybe even more than he likes her. Khalisah tries very hard, texts him, makes it a point to show him she cares, she makes plans she puts in 110% but Henry, dear Henry, his efforts barely show through his supposed half-hearted replies and inability to commit.. At this point in time Khalisah is setting herself up for disappointment as she feels that her effort should be matched with Henry’s undying love and attention. but of course she gets nothing in return and is left disappointed and sad.
my suggestion: if you are going to do anything for someone you love with the intention or with the hope to receive something in return, think twice think hard. there is a scientific probability that the person doesn’t react the way you want them to ,with the opposite being true as well, so why set yourself up for disappointment? choose to do anything with LOVE, do things that make you happy doing them, don’t do anything for the sake of doing it, do something nice for someone because it makes YOU happy and even if the person fails to appreciate you will still be happy. Stop expecting people to feel what you want them to feel. stop it.
2. don’t put all your damn eggs in one basket
if there’s something I have learned from the late-night talks I frequently have with my flatmates, it would be to never commit yourself completely into anything that is volatile( mostly anything that involves feelings and emotions) this is especially crucial if you are in the early stages. but nevertheless everything can go from good to bad to worse to perfect in a matter of days, the future is really quite unpredictable but that is also the beauty of it. use unpredictability to your advantage by being a realist as opposed to being overly optimistic/pessimistic. self-awareness is crucial, if your gut feeling is giving you signals, take it, more often that not we are aware of what is best for us but we tend to choose to ignore these feelings and make decisions that ultimately have dire consequences,mostly consequences that involve getting hurt and becoming emotionally drained.
in banking I learn the importance of spreading investments to reduce the risks through the concept of diversification and in that sense by putting my eggs(my effort and dedication) into various baskets, the overall likelihood of getting hurt is reduced drastically. I am also not suggesting that you date multiple people at once, turn into a 5 timing cheat or anything of that sort but I am suggesting to be open to the idea that everything can change in a matter of a day, feelings fade, people change, so why put yourself in a situation where you would potentially be at the losing end? why allow yourself to get hurt?
3.Happiness comes in all shapes and forms,
happiness can be when the barista at starbucks finally gets your name right, it can also be when you get to hear your mother’s voice over the phone after a long day at work, it can also be when you get an A on the test you worked hard for and it most certainly can be when your other half randomly calls to say “I love you”, happiness can come in so many forms and by placing restrictions on what happiness constitutes, we are depriving ourselves of the ability to see the beauty in everything, and that only makes it harder to be happy. you see, when someone chooses to be miserable and unhappy just because things are messy, they are effectively constraining themselves to the textbook definition of what it means to be happy. so don’t do that. if we really make the effort to look at the brighter side of things, happiness comes naturally as we tend to pick up the smaller details that tend to have a bigger impression on our state of mind. stop looking for happiness in one person, there’s a chance to find happiness in everything you encounter and it all depends on whether or not you are open to accept the unconventionality of the idea.
remember, you can’t control how anyone feels, yes sure you may be able to influence another person, but you can never control and decide how they should or should not feel. therefore, work on yourself instead of trying to correct everyone else. do whatever that is within your means and power. invest in yourself. and if you require a reason to do so, let me give you one. You are worth it. You are amazing and all you have to do is try. Choose to be better and never to be bitter. Love yourself, don’t set unrealistic expectations of others, don’t set yourself up for disappointment and be open and accepting of the fact that there is a chance to find happiness in anything and everything, provided we are willing to remove the self-constraints
let go and let live
shabbat shalom x