IIt is strange how we are encouraged to be selfless in a selfish world. Indeed, survival in this selfish world requires selfishness. So it has to come to you every day, all day. Here’s the skinny and why you need to know …
There is no doubt that there is no point in taking relief measures when we are convinced that external forces are responsible for our misery.
Our buddy upstairs looks a little indignant – pleasantly surprised, in fact. Here’s what’s going on …
In the past three months, she’s had pretty much all she can take from this world. You know the exercise – the virus, social unrest, bad politics, etc. She saw herself as a victim. And that’s because she believes she has no control over attacking one external attack at a time.
She sees her frustration and misery as “her” fault. Whoever “they” may be.
Just recently, a close friend suggested she was responsible for all this frustration and misery. Your friend shared some very hopeful news: You could do something about it. Sure, our buddy was “a little outraged – even pleasantly surprised”. She also knew that she needed to get a little self-centered.
Her friend’s wisdom applies to us.
It depends on you: helpful tools
If any of us are to neutralize the effects of external attacks – practicing healthy “selfishness” – we may need help. After all, it’s not necessarily a given.
Here are two concepts that I think will help. And if they help, they’ll make it easier to learn a few things about ourselves.
There is no doubt that there is no point in taking relief measures when we are convinced that external forces are responsible for our misery. Something known as the Locus of Control (LOC), a personality component, deals with our perception of the primary root cause (s) of what’s going on in our lives.
Do we think our fate is controlled by internal or external forces?
Individuals with an internal LOC believe that their behavior is guided by personal choices and beliefs. Presenting is often about having confidence in the ability to manage yourself and influence the world around you. The future? It is perceived as resting in their own hands and personal choices are believed to produce success or failure.
The fact is, our LOC tends to become more internal as we age.
Individuals with an external LOC believe that control over events and what other people do is beyond their means. In fact, they believe that they personally have very little or no management over such things. They can even go so far as to believe that others are in control of them and have no choice but to obey.
Seems like our buddy lived with an outside LOC.
Although theory and research suggest that LOC is largely learned, there is evidence that it is a response to circumstances. For my money, this means that an external employee who wants to switch to the internal side of the fence can certainly hope so.
Can you see how the control location can have a significant impact on our attitude towards disruptive external factors? By the way, are you an Innie or an Outie?
Rational Emotional Behavior Therapy (REBT)
Rational Emotional Behavior Therapy (REBT) is often viewed as the grandparent of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). I mention it a lot because its model is so easy to understand. In our discussion, the “T” will stand for theory, not therapy.
Although the REBT model contains several other components, this is the most important for us …
A = activate event
B = belief system of the individual
C = consequences of emotions and behavior
When intense emotional and behavioral consequences (C) occur, we usually blame the activating event (A). According to REBT, the real culprit is our belief system (B). This is what it looks like …
B = C.
Instead of A = C.
So that we can better understand the flow, let’s put our friend’s circumstances into our little equation …
A: Activate the event
She can’t avoid the news. And the alarming coverage of COVID-19 goes on and on.
B: Belief system
She believes that all the chaos will never end and that her life will never return to a fulfilling “normal” state. She also believes there is more to the virus than what we are told. “You” are responsible, so everyone is in danger. If all of that is not enough, she is convinced that she will eventually get sick. And when that happens, she will die.
C: consequences of emotions and behavior
She feels like a victim and has no control over her circumstances. Why should she even try in her mind? She has become – as you call it – helpless, hopeless, irritable, tired, isolating, moody, anxious. She finds it difficult to get out of bed and can’t wait for an acceptable time to return.
Our buddy definitely thinks her “C” is caused by “A”. Her friend tries to convince her that it’s all about “B”. And she will never find relief unless and until she buys in. Then of course she has to change her belief system.
Every day, all day
You may agree that dealing with challenging external factors has to be an everyday, full-time, selfish mission. Hopefully, learning about the place of control and the theory of rational emotional behavior will help you in this.
By the way, why do we need to know the skinny?
Our buddy was in a big traffic jam. Given her perspective, I’m not so sure she would have shown up. But she was listening to a friend and now she has a chance.
Would you even consider me a friend Did you listen
Read these inspire4u articles if you want to learn more about the control site and REBT.
If you’re looking for meaningful and inspirational read, my eBook might work for you: Feelings and Rhymes Through Telltale Times.
And don’t forget to read hundreds of inspire4u titles.