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  • Writer's pictureEleanor Snare

Dealing with Loud Problems


 

It’s common for a client to tell me that they have a hard time ignoring the problems and people in their life that shout the loudest – even if they aren’t the most important.


This is an issue because you can end up firefighting, stressed out, reacting to what’s thrust in front of you rather than working steadily on your biggest and most thrilling desires and dreams.


If you want to work on those dreams, I don’t recommend training yourself to ignore the shouts of big, loud, often-other-people's problems.


Here’s why.


Responding to what shouts loudest is a survival tactic. We are primed to be alert to danger, and responding to shouts is a response to danger.


Training yourself to ignore that danger is fairly impossible because it’s completely instinctive.


What’s not instinctive is repeated cycles of perceiving high danger levels where they are not.


This is learned behaviour, often growing out of trauma.


For example, through my childhood I learnt that if someone was sad, it was my responsibility to sort it out. So for a long time, expressions of sadness are like great big clanging bells to me – I heard them, sensed the danger, and leapt in to sort everything out … often at my own expense.


But other people’s sadness is not a danger to me. It doesn’t need to be fixed. It’s allowed to exist, without me responding to it.


To feel this way, I didn’t train myself to ignore things that shout loudest.


Instead I worked on hearing things that were quieter. Things like my own feelings, my own desires and my own dreams. The ‘still small voice of calm’ that exists within me, and guides my most aligned actions.



 


So next time a loud problem (or person) erupts into your experience, try asking yourself these questions:


  • What’s the real danger here?

  • What do I think is going to happen if I don't respond?

  • What would that still small voice tell me to do, if I was quiet enough to listen?

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