Your problems are not less because someone has harder ones
Perspective is interesting. No matter who you are or where you are in life, what you are working through can be equally great or tough. Your great and your tough are unique to your own life.
You may be dealing with a product crisis; you may be getting married, or maybe you are dealing with abusive parents. No matter what these life events demand your attention.
From an outsider looking at our life, a common refrain that has come up in society centers on — oh my troubles aren’t as bad as others. People almost discount their own emotions and feelings, because someone somewhere has it worse or better.
You have a right to feel struggle
YOUR hard struggles are just that, your challenges at this moment. That means you need to deal with them and you need to solve them. So, internally if you feel pressure, concern, fear, and anxiety that is perfectly normal and justified.
Having a perspective of the scale of the problem vs other potential problems is vital. It is the secret to allowing you navigate through these emotions that can stall and cloud your ability to act.
Personally I find myself constantly dealing with fires — team members need help; client situations; failed products and projects, and more serious personal issues within close family and friends. Each one of these impacts me. I empathize for their situation and pain. I work to be a servant to these individuals — seeking to find where and how I can help. Sometimes this practical hands on creativity and business sense. Other times it is simply being present and listening to their challenges.
You deserve to feel joy
Don’t discount your awesome moments in life.
Don’t compare your success, love, and station in life to others.
DO feel joy for the simple and grand
DO appreciate the moments you have that are happy
DO be less fancy
Your happiness is not dictated about the ever escalation of intensity and exclusivity of the thing
When we forget to enjoy all things such as nice food; a smile; a good movie; a well written note to a friend, or anything else small and large — we will never be happy. One of my favorite exercises is to ask -what did you LOVE as a kid?
It’s amazing how much potential that simple question unlocks. It removes all the fancy toys; designer clothes, and extravagant trips from our field of vision. Igniting hidden or lost loves and bringing us closer to our authentic self. That person we were before we started caring what others had and did.
Personal recent example of focusing on the loves
My daughter and I were planning our Spring Break trip. I am not sure how it is elsewhere, but the default activity of most is to find a beach or a pool and spend a few days in these resorts. Initially I booked it, and didn’t feel happy about it from the moment I gave my credit card. There was a lot we could do there; it looked beautiful, and the weather was tracking to be perfect. It was expensive too, not beyond our means but a lot.
At some points she and I decided to create an idea board. This is a judgement free piece of paper (whiteboard for us), everything goes on this board. EVERYTHING. If you want to skydive, you write it. If you want to swim with the dolphins, done.
When we were done we had an amazing list and something very clear had emerged — we wanted to do things together. All of them could be done without the resort. Here are some of the things we did from the list:
- indoor skydiving (she is 10 after all ;)
- trampoline jumping
- Animal encounters at a zoo
- Slept in a barn in the north Georgia mountains
- Rock climbing
- Movie night with popcorn
It was an amazing spring break. We did so much together and experienced far more than we ever would have had we done the ‘standard trip’. For those curious about the $$ … the entire spring break with all of the activities cost the same as one night in the resort.
So more fun, more interaction, more experiences, new skills, and a 75% cost savings.
Perspective is a gift
How you frame your current situation determines how much joy you will have in this world. Perspective helps us thrive in the most difficult situations and to cherish the most wonderful ones too.
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I am a father, study of human behavior, strategist, cybersecurity veteran, and a coach and mentor on a journey to give more than I receive everyday. I lead teams globally, build products, and daily an executive for a leading company where I serve the largest companies in the world using the largest cloud deployments in the world impacting the financial services, healthcare, and fintech industries. I provide these publications and content through my media agency to deliver insights and advantages. Mindset, mental strength, mentorship, personal improvement, health, fitness, and humanist ideas are drawn from personal research and practice. Everything read and heard is my original works and my own perspective. All rights reserved for noted authors and sources. I produce research and strategy, as well as provide advisory services that include inquiries, briefings, consulting projects, and presentations on published findings as well as bespoke speaking engagements where I often keynote at conferences, seminars, and roundtables annually.