When you're going through hell. . .

I am amazed at at how resilient we are.  We go through life with such blows that should level us.  Yet somehow we bounce back.  It's the how we bounce back that matters.  How we deal with the pain.

How we deal with the pain is an important choice.  I'm talking about tools and pacifiers.  A tool has a specific function that helps us solve or complete something.  A pacifier suppresses discomfort.  It's obvious that we would want to use tools and not pacifiers, yet we often choose pacifiers over tools.

Here's some common pacifiers:

1. Alcohol/drugs
2. Sex
3. Food
4. Screen time (phones, TV, etc)
5. Busy work / productivity
6. Needless self-sacrifice

Notice how none of these things are bad in and of themselves.  It's how we use them.  After we suppress the negative feelings of hurt and pain, we are no better off than before.  The pacifying effect will wear off and we are back to square one again or worse off.  Instead, let's use tools that will help us move forward.

Here's some great tools to help work through pain:

1. Fitness
2. Therapy
3. Talking with supportive friends
4. Writing/journaling
5. Meditation/praying
6. Time in nature

Like most important things in life, it just takes pausing, taking a moment, and asking ourselves a question.  This time it's "is this a pacifier or a tool?"  The hard part is carving a quiet moment amidst the pain.  

We can do this.