Occasionally, I have moments when I want to run away. It’s not that I want to pack everything up and go off the grid. When the urge to run comes up, I now realize that it is a feeling I get when I want to avoid something or someone. In my head, I feel like running away will make the uncomfortable feeling go away. Avoidance shows up in a few ways. For example, some people say that they feel like they want to simply sleep through it. I know the feeling well.

Running away is about control

For me, when the urge strikes to run away, it is usually about something that I cannot control. Learning that I cannot control everything has been a big chunk of my personal development journey. Accepting “what is” takes conscious effort. I admit that I sometimes feel weak when I step into acceptance. I used to feel like I was giving up or giving in. It felt natural to challenge everything.

Acceptance does not equal weak

Acceptance does not mean that I am weak. It only means that when the urge to run away or avoid a situation comes up, I now understand that when I face a situation for what it is, the faster I can move on. Looking back, I see where I wasted a lot of energy struggling to control situations that I could have let go. A lot of my self-worth was wrapped up in my need for control. When you really think about it, fighting something that is out of your control is a waste of precious energy. Focusing my energy on things that move me towards my goals is more empowering than wasting energy on that which is out of my control.

Self-awareness and practice

It takes self-awareness to identify the moments when I want to run away. When that feeling hits me, I take a deep breath, and I allow myself to feel what is coming up for me and why. If the situation is really out of my control, I let it go. It’s not like it magically disappears. I have learned to think about things in my life that make me happy or people that bring me joy. I remind myself that running towards something I want is a much better choice than running away from something I don’t want. Trust me, this takes practice. Lots and lots of practice, and I get to practice it a lot!

Your turn

It’s your turn – I’m always interested in how others  handle stressful, or shall I say, challenging situations. What tips are you willing to share in the comments below?

Focusing your energy on things that move you towards your goals is more empowering than wasting energy on that which is out of your control.

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