How to Handle Bad News

              Everyone at some point in their life has gotten some bad news. Sometimes the news is more serious and sometimes the bad news is something you can easily shrug off. How we react to the bad news really shows what we are made of. I’ve always recognized that in the tough times, that’s when the most growth happens. Take a break up for instance. I’ve learned more about myself during my breakups than perhaps any other moments of my life. During hard times like these, it shows us how vulnerable we are. We then go into defense mode and this is where we start to battle with ourselves as if our mind is telling us one thing but our emotions are saying something else. This is where we really sharpen our tool kit to have better self-control.

              No one likes bad news. But it’s how we react to that bad news is what makes us who we are. Maybe the bad news came as a result of something we did or maybe it was random. It doesn’t really matter because at the end of the day we still feel the same crappy way. Whenever really bad news happens, it’s hard to think with any normal amount of clarity. That’s why these moments can define how we deal with our problems. Because we needs to be strong in the most delicate and hazy mindset. Bad news can force our brains to think irrationally and self-destructive at times. That’s why it’s crucial to have a goal and a list of reminders to help deal with the situation. Everyone knows what they have to do, but not everyone knows how to execute.

              The day or so after receiving bad news, I would say the best thing to do is just stop and reflect. Let it have its moment and let the initial negative emotions out of the way. It will happen to everyone. Spend time reflecting, writing down how you feel, and monitoring your thoughts. Having awareness of your thoughts may be the most important step in this now recovery process. Because if we want to have control over our thoughts, we first need to be aware of what those thoughts are.

              For this reason, I highly suggest writing down anything that’s on your mind. Writing down your fears can be one of the best ways to get over those fears. At the very least, you will realize your fears are less intimidating than you originally thought. After writing down your fears, try writing down a game plan. Chances are by now you are thinking more clearly and perhaps even feeling a little better. That’s why it’s safe to move onto writing down an action plan to move on from the bad news. Perhaps it’s a plan to exercise 5 days a week. Or maybe a plan to read and write every day. Or even a plan to call a friend just to say ‘Hi’ twice a week. Whatever the plan is, make sure you are in a clear state of mind and then work on executing that plan. The difficult part will be when you slip back into the emotional mindset and still have to execute the plan. This takes a lot of self-control and is where we learn a lot about ourselves and grow as a person. We grow the most during our most difficult times. So what we may think in the moment is such a horrifying phase, looking back we are most likely going to be happy that we went through it.

              We’ve all been through difficult times. Some more than others perhaps. However, dealing with the situation is part of a larger growing experience with ourselves. How we react to difficult times is what defines us as who we are. We grow the most during difficult times and often look bad at those times as thankful to have gone through them. In such an emotional state, it’s important to have a game plan for when we get thrown of course which will happen at some point. Writing down your fears and worries and what you are looking forward to can have a massively positive effect on our mood and mental clarity. That’s why writing down anything that pops into your mind is highly recommended when going through any type of hardship. The simple act of writing down your thoughts will help you become more aware of them and eventually lead to you having more self-control and mental clarity.

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