Tuesday, 5 July 2016

Ten good reasons why ..............

Hello. There are a lot of things going on around us which might cause us a lot of worry and upset, whether it  be inside our friends and family circle, or outside in the big wide world. It is very easy to be affected by what we see, what we read about and what others tell us face to face, because we all have feelings. Quite often it is difficult to control what we feel because our emotions are personal to us and part of our genetic make up. We can appear to be in control but we can also be caught off guard and become angry or sad pretty quickly when something negative happens. We don't always have a choice about how we feel.

But..... I also believe that in some circumstances our emotions can be controlled and we can learn how to deal with situations which may have a less than desirable outcome.  There are times when I feel that whatever I say or do will not make any difference to how a situation pans out, so it's best to take a back seat and do nothing. This is not to say I am not a caring person because I am. I do feel hurt and sadness, I do have empathy for someone who is in a bad place, but I am not going to beat myself up about something I have no control over whatsoever.

If something has affected me I will try and identify the solution. If I can't do anything to change things, to turn  a negative into a positive, I have to put my own feelings first. My coping strategy is to switch off.

So here are my ten good reasons why I might bury my head in the sand.

1. I can't do anything about it.
2. It's got nothing to do with me.
3. I don't want to know what happened.
4. I don't need to know what happened.
5. I need to protect my sanity.
6. It's not my fault.
7. I can ignore it.
8. It doesn't affect me.
9. I am not responsible for the outcome.
10. I don't need the stress.

You may have your own coping strategies. In these modern times in a fast moving world it would be very easy to absorb all the turmoil and upset we see around us. There has to be a cut off point, a time when we think of ourselves. It's not being selfish, it's a matter of self preservation, putting our own health and well being first.

Thanks for popping in. we'll catch up soon.
Toodle pip


  1. I'm going to bookmark this post and reread it when events happen that start to upset me. I dwell on things over which I have no control.

    A few weeks ago I stopped watching the news about our U.S. election and I feel better. Just yesterday, though, there was something in our local news that upset me so much that I had trouble sleeping. That is not good for my health.

    Thank you for your common sense thoughts, Ilona.

  2. Usually in our personal lives we can alter things i.e. with help get out of a relationship that is not working, stop seeing friends who we no longer are compatible with etc. If we feel that we are being duped by our utility providers - make attempts to find a new supplier, or don't use the garage again that we think took us for a really expensive ride. What I find upsetting is what is going on in the world and which I have very little power to stop, this may sound harsh but I chuck all the begging charity letters in the recycling box: I donate what I can to who I choose to, I do not feel obligated and will not feel pressured into giving to an organisation who send out distressing pictures and statistics. I am not in a position currently to do voluntary work but I am happy to donate as and when I am able. Just quickly, veering off a little, I do wonder where the donations to charities actually ends up - am not alleging they are all corrupt in any way - but some of these bodies pay extraordinarily high salaries to their 'chief executives' and 'higher management' so where does the donations exactly go to? I will not stop giving to my preferred charities but it is puzzling. Amanda

  3. My old mum used to say if you don't know what to do, do nothing. I try to live by that also the serenity prayer is a good rule to live by. Love jane

  4. A good and useful post for many people Ilona. I have a very similar way of dealing with things.

  5. When I was a child I was aware of so many adults saying to each other 'don't get involved'. I found this curious as I thought they ought to get involved and try to have a positive affect on things. Too many people turn away from situations so I'm afraid I still think the same way as a child. I try to act where others turn away, care when others do not. So what if it hurts me? Better to act than be a bystander to other people and their misery. Can I solve all their problems? absolutely not. But I can show I care and have empathy and stand shoulder to shoulder with someone when there is nothing else to do.

    Evil happens when good people do nothing. You see it all the time and we talk about it afterwards, fat lot of good that does for any one. There is too much self preservation at the expense of others.

    By John Donne (1624)

    No man is an island,
    Entire of itself,
    Every man is a piece of the continent,
    A part of the main.
    If a clod be washed away by the sea,
    Europe is the less.
    As well as if a promontory were.
    As well as if a manor of thy friend's
    Or of thine own were:
    Any man's death diminishes me,
    Because I am involved in mankind,
    And therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls;
    It tolls for thee.

    1. That is more like me anonymous (name?). I struggle to stand by too.

    2. Me too - especially with regard to this:

      Evil happens when good people do nothing.

      Holocaust survivor (Auschwitz and Buchenwald) an "author who fought for peace, human rights and simple human decency" died on Friday aged 87. Something he said on winning the Nobel peace prize really resonated with me:

      "We must always take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented. Sometimes we must interfere. When human lives are endangered, when human dignity is in jeopardy, national borders and sensitivities become irrelevant. Whenever men or women are persecuted because of their race, religion or political views, that place - must at that moment - become the centre of the universe."

    3. Me too. When some very desperate people are in distress I must do whatever I can. Of course that doesn't mean be naive about who is really needy. I am talking about real situation, real people and real needs. In other areas of my life I can switch off but when it comes to those in my sphere I simply can't do that. All the quotations above do resonate with me for that reason.

  6. Very good and thoughtful post Ilona.
    Wise words, I will bookmark this, thank you.
    Pam in TX.xx

  7. Ten excellent points, that I wish I had seen this time last year ! He ho , onwards and upwards

  8. Interesting post Ilona. I like this quote which I read recently: Sympathise with people around you but avoid getting yourself involved in their unsolvable problems. SueM

  9. You are SO VERY WISE. Thank you TEN TIMES TEN TIMES OVER for your reminders of how to get or restore one's peace/sanity/stability.

  10. I try to do my bit - Christian Aid send me their magazine from time to time. I send off the postcards included in the magazine to the politicians lobbying certain points. It's just my little contribution to the good of the world. Natalie

  11. Very well spoke, Iona.. Very well spoke.

    About thirty years ago when I took my First Aid Course (and I have heard others say they still instruct much the same), is that the VERY FIRST rule of rendering First Aid to anyone, is to first consider your safety in said situation. They were firm that if you put yourself at risk of injury / death etc, you would not be able to give First Aid to anyone, and so on. I find this similar.
    (of course that is not to say I would worry about getting muddy or such, but if someone was drowning, me as a non swimmer would be foolish to jump in to rescue them....etc)

    I have a number of relatives, I am sad to say, are...ahem..abusive "users"...In my younger yrs, I was rather more foolish sort, and would sometimes give/do more for them than I had any right to, as it left me very "short"...sigh. Over the years I smartened up, and learned. Now, when it comes to these relatives, (and I think much the same of much in the news)..."let go and let God"...(someone told me they often say this phrase at AA?)...

    You are wise to try to keep your "self".

  12. My friend has a saying for this. Not my circus, not my monkeys. That's not to say that I turn my back where I can help. I just got a call from the vet about the injured feral kitty my friend and I rescued on Saturday. The bill right now is $260 and climbing now at $26 per day, and I don't know for how long.

    When I can't influence the outcome, my circus saying comes to my rescue. When I can make a difference, I do. I can influence the outcome of that kitty's well being, so I open my wallet. There's a difference.

  13. okay, already made a comment, but thought I would make another..(I ended with "Let go and Let God)

    just read Anonymous above/below say "I try to do my bit"..

    yes, I too try to do my bit. In a way, it is a bit like sending off postcards...
    for example...

    A while back I was in a grocery store checkout with a young, maybe 16 yr old Cashier. She was lovely and helpful and efficient. The cashier in the aisle next to me was a well known "witch"..I avoided her like the plague. In fact, if she was the only cashier open, had even left my groceries. Why didn't I complain? Well, she seemed to "know someone high up". It wasn't the Store Manager, as I know he had put the Box Boy (an older man, but still called Box Boy), on a mission to subtly survey customers about the witch, and basically see if any wanted to make an official complaint. (not me).

    anyway, this day with my young cashier...The Witch kept calling over instructions to the youngers, critizing meanly/rudely and abusively. I was even more appalled than usual.

    so, I went to customer service, and asked to speak to the manager. This was right at the end of the tills, so it was easy to see me there.

    The manager came, and I said not a word about the Witch. I complimented the Young Cashiers Skills/efficiency, politeness etc. Asked the Manager to put it in her file, and so forth. (manager was very pleased with me taking the time)

    Out of the corner of my eye as I left I saw the Witch High Tale it over to the Manager Customer Service. I heard a raised voice and left. I was assuming the witch thought I was complaining about her (but no idea), and was letting the Manger Know I was out to lunch).

    Whatever actually was said, the next time/ and ever after, I shopped there, the Witch was Gone.

  14. 'It's not being selfish, it's a matter of self preservation, putting our own health and well being first.' Very well said Ilona, wise and oh so important to remember, always! <3 KarenV

  15. I do not ever read the news! Now.
    News makes me not sleep, ponder what I could do. reality nothing. . Last I watched was the horrific scene of pilot burning to death by Isis.
    I banned myself as it was making me unwell.

  16. Excellent post and comments...love how you get us thinking...I have neither the time nor energy to do what I'd like but do what I can to make my corner of the world a better place...I agree with Anon...take the time to compliment someone to their boss...take the time to tell someone what you appreciate about them...do no harm...

  17. Spot on! I also have to stand back. I don't like confrontation but i won't stand for abuse of any kind. We don't have regular TV anymore and it's the best thing we've ever done. I sleep better. I don't know who any of the latest 'stars' are and i love it!

  18. Off topic - but I was just wondering what the result of the shed competition was ? I haven't seen it anywhere, unless I've missed it ?

    1. Hi. The results won't be revealed until the television programmes are broadcast on Channel 4 at the end of this month. You need to check your TV magazine for dates, I will post them on here once I get confirmation.

  19. You are spot on with this list Ilona...so many things in the world today are absolutely horrific and cruel.If we allowed ourselves to dwell too much we would be ill.
    The best strategy is to help with what we can,but some things are beyond our power regardless of how sad we are about them.The serenity poem is a good inspiration. Can you remember the Desiderata poem from the 70's or 80's, the one that was made into a song,that also is comforting when you feel stressed. Enjoying your blog Ilona, it's great,

  20. I am always help someone (or an animal) in genuine need. I try and not worry about the things I can do nothing about though as it just makes me feel depressed. Also, we should all beware toxic friendships that drag us down and abuse our good nature.

  21. I have to agree here after going through somethings my sanity is extremly important to me , just as important as my physical health , i guard it like a gem now :)x

  22. This works up to a point but there are some things you really shouldn't bury your head in the sand about. Poverty, cruelty, prejudice, outright evil...if we simply ignore it then the people responsible get away with it and what's more it will grow to the point that it's acceptable. I can quite easily ignore the latest celebrity divorce but I'm the first to open my mouth when I see a child being punched in the street, as happened quite recently.


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