Reality Has Two Sides: The Grim And The Pleasant

Reality can be tough, especially now. Depending on our mindset we can focus too much on only one perspective, and even though it is typically great to focus on the pleasant, or positive, it is just as important to take a look at the grim as well, so that we are aware of the truth of what’s going on around us and around the world. Oftentimes we can get stuck in either one extreme or the other and when we are focused only on one aspect of reality that is the angle we see. The trick to reality is seeing all sides, even if it makes us uncomfortable, doing what we can to give back and help those in need and also looking for the good, in our own lives and out in the world. Some may feel this is a tall order right now, but it is within that balance that we are positive and productive people who are open to learning and growing from those around us and the circumstances we find ourselves in.

When I was living in my illness I only looked at reality through one lens at a time. First, I didn’t even like the word reality, I tried to escape it as much as possible, leaving things undone or neglected while I lived in the bubble of my mind, and as my illness got worse that bubble became darker, angrier and my sinister, and my perspective on reality was one only of doom and gloom. I would escape it in short bursts, trying to use outside things to escape the reality I saw using substances, shopping, friends, exercise, whatever I could do to get a little fix of happy and forget the day-to-day reality I was seeing. It never occurred to me back then that it was a matter of perspective and that what I chose to see is what I would see more of, and even when I would see something positive my negative thinking back then would turn it into something negative out of fear, mistrust, or just down-right sabotage. I was the at the controls but always playing the victim to life and its cruel games.

When I made a commitment to get the help I needed I had to learn to look at life for what it was. Life wasn’t all bad, it certainly had bad or grim elements but there were a lot of good or pleasant ones too, and if I wanted to recover I had to allow life to be just what it was but continue to look for the positive to drown out those negative voices that ruled my world. It wasn’t always easy to accept life and all it had for me, but I was reminded, that even at it’s darkest, those times did always pass, and when I looked back, they did, if I let them. It was pointed out to me that life is like the ocean, ebbing and flowing as it hits the shore, it never stays still, and even when it appears still, it is still moving. I was told to learn to ride those ebbs and flows knowing that the lows don’t last forever and they will rise up again, and, to remember that the highs don’t stay high forever and it’s OK to let those highs get low because that is just the way life goes. I had to also learn to face reality, to not hide from what I didn’t want to see, to acknowledge it and do what I could about it and ride it out until the next wave came. Those times were the most challenging for me, but where I found the most growth.

Living life in balance with reality can be challenging, but it is where we are best able to make the right decisions for ourselves and be of service to others. It can be tempting to want to hide from reality or fall deep down into the doom and gloom of life, but in both cases we are not at maximum power to ourselves. Find that balance, even if you don’t feel comfortable there, look at life from both sides and find a way to ride the next wave as it comes in. SLAY on!

SLAY OF THE DAY: Do you tend to look at life from only one angle? Which one do you typically focus on? How does it hurt you to only look at life one way? Why do you choose to do that? What can you do to stay more in the middle of life and look at both sides? Does the thought of that make you feel uncomfortable? How? Life is a series of ups and downs, it’s important to see both and ride out the highs and lows, knowing that each of them will change, but letting yourself live both and make the right decisions for yourself to further your growth on your journey. Find your balance and live in between.

S – self L – love A – appreciate Y – you

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