Are you a Victim or Creator?
Having a mental illness is a bunch of crap. Let’s be honest. It’s an everyday battle. I am always caught between these two thoughts: “I can’t do that today. I’m too depressed…” and “That’s true, but I still have to do crap.” I allow myself to be tossed back and forth between victim and victor.
– Are quick to blame others for their circumstances
– Have a fixed mindset: meaning they feel they “can’t” change
– Make excuses
– Give up
– Shy away from responsibilities
– Seek out attention and validation
– Focus on their weaknesses
– Believe that life is out of their control
-Look at problems as permanent
Victims feel that they have no control over the world around them and that they have no control over what is going on inside of them. I have been there. I am there, most days anyway. And it is an empty, awful, hopeless, and painful place to be.
Now yes, there are truly victims in this world. We cannot always control what happens to us or our loved ones, but we can control how we respond to each situation. If you feel your life is so terrible, take a page out of this man’s book:
“Everything can be taken from a man but… the last of human freedoms- to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way…”
– Viktor Frankl
Frankl was an Austrian psychiatrist and Holocaust survivor who was moved between three different internment camps between 1942-1945. He lost his wife, mother, and brother. Immediately after his release, he began to develop and lecture his own theory of psychological healing.
I don’t know about you, but my life certainly cannot compare to the lives of the Holocaust victims. While it is an extreme example, I feel it is the perfect example. No matter what life throws at you (or what you throw at yourself!) you can find meaning, purpose, and even joy in your existence.
– Take responsibility for their actions
– Have a growth mindset: meaning they know they can improve
– Are open to constructive criticism
– Have goals
– Confront obstacles and challenges
– Do not need validation from others
– Are “do-ers”
– Ask for help
– Seek solutions
– Look at problems as temporary
Creators know that they always have a choice, no matter the situation. You can always choose how you will respond to challenges. Creators know that even though they cannot control everything around them, they can at least control themselves. How empowering!
We all have different challenges that we deal with. One thing that I deal with is my mental illness. Yes, I call it “my” and I do that because it is a part of me. Although I do not always have control over my mental health or how I feel or even what I think sometimes, I can choose to do my best every day, regardless.
If you are dealing with something in your life that you cannot always control, you are not alone. Be brave. Put up a fight. Nobody can do it for you.
Here are a few small changes you can make to improve your mindset:
– Stop complaining
– Develop gratitude
– Speak up when necessary
– Shut up when necessary
– Think of one thing every day that you can improve: clean your room, wash your hair, weed your garden, call your grandmother, do some yoga, get on a sleep schedule, ask for help, eat something that grows from the earth.
Viktor Frankl also said the following: “What is to give light must endure burning.”
Be aware of your mindset. Are you a victim to your circumstances or are you a creator of your circumstances?
Will you emanate light into this world or will you allow yourself to be consumed by the flame?