Make it relative: how to give problems their required level of importance
Learn to make your problems relative, to value them and give them the importance that they truly have. Discover how to achieve a positive attitude when faced with difficulties.
Often, when we get angry with someone, we use up a lot of energy by being upset, having negative thoughts, milling things over and over in our head. Apart from being exhausting, always being on the defensive leaves us at a disadvantage. This way of thinking can take over and we are no longer deciding your own actions but, instead, we are steered by what has happened, unnecessarily justifying our actions, looking for others to blame without looking beyond the situation.
But what if we managed not to care about it all? This is the same question that Mark Manson (blogger) asked himself when he began to write articles for himself which reflected on how he saw life. His main conclusion was that, most times, nothing that is worrying us deserves the attention that we give it.
This popular millennial became known because of his blog, and he was so successful that he published a book which became a bestseller: The subtle art of (almost) not giving a f*ck. The key to this lies in the ‘almost’. To not be bothered about anything in life is complicated, but when we have to choose, what is it that should really be important?
How to make problems relative
We come across many people in just a single day. We have run-ins and misunderstandings, but each of these affects the way we approach these situations, and how we evaluate trivialities when faced with what is really important. If we let ourselves be led by trifles, we waste time and energy to face up to more relevant things.
To identify what is important to each of us, it is essential to find out what things distract us and use up our energy:
- Other people’s opinions: instead of letting ourselves be influenced by what others think about us, we should place more value in our opinion of ourselves.
- Insults and disasters: things which don’t bring any value to our lives should be left behind. Therefore, we should distance ourselves from any hurt we may suffer that is caused by others and, in this way, free up our mental space to make room for the more important things.
- Predictions: we often waste more energy thinking about what might happen than in working towards avoiding what we are thinking about (which, normally, is not good). But, how can we worry about something that is unimportant, and which hasn’t happened? By being aware that we need to face things with certainty and avoid incidental distractions. A good trick is to ask ourselves if this will be relevant in a year. If the answer is no, don’t give it another minute’s thought.
We can summarise Mark Manson’s philosophy in 5 points:
1. Confusions, deceptions and little disasters are part of life and are always present in our daily lives. We should accept this.
2. The less that daily conflicts affect you, the freer and more satisfied you will be. In the end, happiness lies in not being affected too much by these things.
3. You don’t always need to prove yourself or show others how strong you are. This behaviour can lead to unhappiness.
4. Given that living entails resolving problems, at least choose the ones that are worth the trouble.
5. Confrontations are necessary. There are some things in life that need to be broken so that they can later be rebuilt in a better way.
If we stop feeling like victims of what occurs around us we can decide, in a conscientious way, how we want the most relevant times of our lives to be.