term bankruptcy often sends people into a spiraling state of panic as I have
discussed in prior articles. It is
not unusual when discussing the bankruptcy process for people to break out in a
cold sweat. Their pupils dilate as
their flight or fight system kicks in from the fear that washes over them. As well a lump develops in their throat
and a gnawing sensation swells in their gut from the fear and anticipation when
discussing bankruptcy. These
feelings and physiological responses are great if you are getting ready to
compete in any athletic event but not so much when you are dealing with the
reality that your finances appear to be beyond your control.
So what do you do?
You have two choices.
First you can give into your fear which can result in ulcers and going
further into panic mode. Or take
Door #2 and face your fears head on.
It is truly that easy? Just
make a choice and take the action?
For most humans it is not that easy and don’t let anyone undermine you if
can’t turn the magical switch and cure all that ails you.
Very rarely can someone change their behavior instantly.
For most it is a process that takes time to make a change.
When you are in a panic mode, especially when you
have no clue of how you are going to put food on the table, it is easy to become
tunnel visioned. All you see is
that you are a failure for not providing for yourself and/or your family with no
relief in sight. So what do you
Step away in order to gain focus.
Sounds weird? Think of the
situation as a camera. If you try
and focus on an object up close the camera often times cannot focus.
You must pull back from the object to allow the lens the ability to focus
and then you can approach the object again. Sometimes you must pull back from the
object as well as adjusting the lighting to allow it to be brought into
focus. Your financial dilemma is
You are human which means you have
frailties. Guess what, we all have
frailties in some aspect of our lives.
This does not necessarily mean we are weak but it does mean we are
human. Keeping this in mind when
facing a situation that seems like there are no answers to be had allows you to
step out of the tunnel while allowing light to illuminate the problem. So being the camera you are going to
pull from the situation and focus on something else besides yourself.
What??? You want me to NOT focus on the fact that
I am flat broke and can’t put food on the table? Yes, that is exactly what I am
saying. Changing your focus is not
about burying your head in the sand or running away from the financial elephant
sitting on your chest. It is
simply pulling back from the current focal point to allow a fresh perspective.
Successful artists, authors, mathematicians,
scientists, employers, etc… will often change their perspective when facing a
roadblock. This can be simply
stepping away from the problem and taking a walk to focus on the splendor of
nature. Other ideas to change
your focus or perspective: listen to upbeat music, donate your time helping
someone else, sit in a quiet room while clearing your thoughts and deep
breathing or make a list of everything positive in your life no matter how
small. In fact I highly recommend
that you end each day writing down three things that are positive about the
day. When we change our focus we
allow our spirit and our minds to seek out new solutions that we might not have
been able to see before. It allows
us to change our perspective.
Yes, it is true that some people truly cannot
afford to place food on the table.
Or they must choose between buying medication or buying food.
But for most the fact is that they can purchase food, prepare it and
place it on the table but they rather eat out instead.
By changing the focus and the re-examining the financial problem you can
seek out a solution. It may not be
a solution that you desire but it is a solution that can assist you in regaining
financial control. Eating out is a
common fact for many in today’s society and the fact is we spend more money on
eating out than if we were to stay home and cook.
So maybe by changing your focus with respect to food preparation you can
find a creative solution.
For example, you hit the local grocery store and
see what is on sale that week.
From there you make it a challenge for the “family” to create a menu
around these sale items. If you
have a Price Chopper in your area, you are lucky.
They take their sale items and present menu ideas from these sale
items. I take this idea one step
further. I gather the menu ideas
from Price Chopper and the list of sale items then head on over to Walmart to
Price Match. Reality is Walmart
overall offers a better price point for groceries.
I too hate grocery shopping and cooking so I changed my focus from food
preparation the chore to food preparation the great adventure.
One of my clients is always upbeat to the point
of delirium. One day I asked her
for her secret for remaining so positive when facing financial and health
problems. Her response: “Child, there is no secret.
Every day on this side of the dirt is a good day to be alive.” She went on to explain that as long as
she woke up on this side of the dirt and with God by her side there was nothing
so insurmountable that she could not seek out a solution.
She may not like the solution but there was ALWAYS a solution to be
had. For as long as I have known
her, her focus remains on God and seeking solutions instead of the problem.
Is she perfect? Although she is magnificent in my point
of view she remains humble and admits that she has stumbled a time or two in her
long lifetime. She does not focus
on the times that she has stumbled but rather finds strength in the all the
hurdles she has overcome. What a
great perspective! I am a very
blessed attorney as hardly a week goes by without one of my clients inspiring me
as well as providing a different focal point to gain perspective on my life.
Remember that knowledge is power.
The more knowledge you have about changing your perspective, the more
power you will have work through any problems in your
Bankruptcy Law Network, LLC, 6502 S. 6th Street, Klamath Falls,
OR 97603, USA
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