Sunday, December 22, 2013

How to prioritise daily when coping with failure/loss

1) Act on professionals' advice
There's nothing more important than our health.  This is the number one priority always.  Do you have to take medication to stay healthy?  Then take it as prescribed.  If you don't have to take medication but someone professional has given you advice - then act on it.  Perhaps you don't agree with some of it. A good friend of mine told me that her advisor asked her to 'compare yourself with others' - which I don't agree with.  I believe this leads to envy and depression.  But perhaps I shouldn't throw the baby out with the bathwater.  The same person said 'Consider all your options; contemplate and consider before making decisions.'  This is good advice.  Sometimes we may be more experienced in a scenario than the people we are asking for advice - perhaps more time is needed to make a decision about a course of action, perhaps further advice can be sought; a second opinion.  But remember, professionals are normally right - they are experienced in this, that is why they are professionals, they are paid to give you this advice. They will help you prioritise - for you.  They probably know you better than you think, and perhaps help you re-order this list and put different activities on it. Ignore professional advice at your peril.
2) Keep in contact if possible with family
Can you open up with family about your problems; your failures and losses?  They will most likely be very understanding and want to help - by talking to you and perhaps you could stay with them for a little while.  Perhaps tell them what the professionals have advised. Ask them what they think - do they agree?  Most families are there for each other in times of loss or crisis.  Keep the relationships strong at this time, cook your family a meal or send a thank you card for their support.

3) If family are out of the equation then keep contact with friends
You may find that your friends are your family.  Not a problem, your friends love you just as much, sometimes more so, than your family.  Keep in regular phone contact with them - they will want to know you are alright. Like your family, your friends may have an opinion on what the professionals are advising, perhaps worth listening to.

4) Seek ongoing support from the professionals
As well as acting on their advice - which could be a daily activity like taking medication, make sure that you are keeping your GP, counsellor, therapist, advisor or mentor up to date on your life.  They may not realise everything that is going on - this may change their advice of course so it is best to be as open as possible with the professionals, as often as feels comfortable and beneficial.  This could be weekly, fortnightly or monthly and could take place on the telephone.

5) Get plenty of sleep/rest
This is very important - for me at any rate.  I need at least 7 hours of sleep each night.  Go without and I start to lose the plot.

6) Eat good food
Eating good, fresh, wholesome food on a budget is possible in the UK I think.  Pasta and vegetables, jacket potatoes, boiled eggs, beans on toast.  You may find that a vegetarian diet is the way forward on a budget - better for you too.

7) Meditate
Breathe in and say calm on your out breath ten times.  Meditation is simply focussed relaxation - do whatever you feel relaxed doing to get in the 'Zone'.  Computer games might be the thing for you, for me burning incense and gazing at a fixed spot on the ceiling.

8) Do some exercise
Go running or start running.  You just need to put on some trainers and out the door you go, start with a few seconds running to start with, then a minute, then five and after about six weeks you should be able to run without stopping for 30 minutes. 

9) Manage your finances
Check your bank account daily, set up text alerts on your mobile with your bank so you get a text when you go below say £100.  If your life feels out of control, then reign it back under control and stick to your monthly, weekly and daily budget.

10) Help others
You may find, particularly if you're getting professional help, that you start to feel better shortly after your failure or loss.  Are you in a position where you have a skill or asset that you could put to good use to help others?  This will help you feel part of the community and society again and do wonders for your self esteem at this critical time, getting you back into a routine.

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