How to cope when life loses all its meaning
ANXIETY is rising and diagnosed in one in five people. With constant changes on so many fronts we require new skills with which to face what is happening to us to avoid being overwhelmed.
More than 60% of cases in therapy are reported to be existential in nature (Shafranske & Maloney, 1990). More shocking is the lack of addressing spiritual issues in psychology training, and this is the norm throughout mental health professionals, according to the same paper.
An existential crisis is when a person searches for the foundation of living– its meaning and purpose.
This week’s question comes from Cindy in Rosebank, who asks: “I don’t know why I keep going. I am anxious all the time. I feel alone. My world is surrounded by darkness. My worst fears are coming true. I don’t see any hope. What can I do?”
Dear Cindy, you are not alone. The best way to approach what is happening is to find a place where you can master control. Since your external world is overwhelming and constantly changing, try something different.
We are taught to manipulate our environment. But, when the future becomes unpredictable, it makes sense to discover a place where we do have power. The true centre of power lies in our thoughts and emotions.
You will feel more powerful when you believe that you express what you think and feel. Reflection allows you to become self-aware and learn by noticing what is still positive when you look at it from a writer’s point of view.
An extrovert, who has to tell someone what is going on, needs a specialist life coach. This exter nal relationship should preferably allow you to make your own meanings instead of being coloured by someone else’s opinions. A professional is advisable over a friend.
Adele Green is a transfor mation specialist and author of Can You See Me Naked. Send questions to www. a d e l e - g re e n . c o m/ a s k - adele/. Her show is broadcast at #360Brunch on Mix 93.8FM every Sunday at 11.30am.