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Vishal Ostwal

I Write About Life

How to Make Life Less Painful (and Heal Yourself)

Make Life Less Painful

“Each day void of pains would be a blessing. I’d call that a perfect life.”

We’re all sort of fakers.

We hide our pain, put on a smile, and pretend like everything’s alright.

To be honest, I’m not different. I’ve faced financial challenges, been bullied often as a kid, observed disputes among my family, and failed at goals I had planned for years … while wishing all the while for everything to mend.

I didn’t want a reason to cry anymore.

I wished for a peaceful sleep. Not a million dollars, or an exotic vacation, or even anything big – just a simple life, void of pains.

But a life free of pains doesn’t make sense

Life’s painful.

You deal with this truth anyhow.

There are always certain issues you need to fix. You cannot run away from them, either. So you stand there and battle while handling things your way.

That changed something in me

The pains in life had an advantage – they turned me into an empath.

I could feel how others felt. I asked them their problems, so they won’t suffocate themselves and finally feel better. I had to do it, as I had been through the same.

I felt it was my responsibility as a fellow human to do something, no matter how small, to make life simpler for others. That’s when I realized that we’re all similar. The ones who deal with unpleasant circumstances.

Given below are a few ways which have made my life easy when I could almost see it falling apart.

They won’t work like a magic wand, but I assure that life would be better after you understand them. You’d find peace and happiness.

Here are some genuine ways to make your life less painful

  1. Share your pains, insecurities and almost everything

“When I felt pain, I isolated myself from others. I stopped talking. Although I pretended like nothing had happened, I died from within all the while.”

I wanted people around me to care, to ask me what’s wrong, and maybe even hug me and give me a false assurance.

“Hey, everything will be alright,” I wanted someone to whisper in my ear.

As time passed, I realized that my people aren’t superhumans. They could not know what I deal with unless I speak up.

Same applies to you. You need to share and talk. You need to express yourself. Expressing how you feel is relieving and soothing.

Let out what kills you from within, and some people would always take care of you. Share as much as you can. Pour out, and empty your pains.

  1. Accept and forgive yourself completely

“I’d feel guilty, almost always. I felt like noncompetitive when my grades collapsed, when I lacked certain skills, or when I couldn’t fulfil my own expectations.”

I kept blaming myself.

“You’re foolish,” “You’re undeserving,” the voices would keep echoing inside my heat. I felt like a blemish on myself. But when it kept going on for too long, for years, I knew I was doing something wrong.

I was tearing apart my self-esteem and ruining my own life, which I wasn’t supposed to do. Since then, I’ve changed.

Things go wrong and I still feel dissatisfied with life, often. However, I don’t blame myself for everything that occurs. Whatever I am, I accept myself first. I try to be kinder to myself.

  1. Admit that you’ve failed … and that you wish to succeed

“I’d feel hopeless. I thought of myself as a failure when I couldn’t get what I wanted. I used tiny situations to judge my whole character and capabilities.”

I was wrong.

Someone created this notion – you shouldn’t fail.

If you do, you’re a loser. You’re supposed to be the fastest in the rat-race. You have to be an indomitable winner to live a good life.

I believed that, too, until I failed at some things.

Failure isn’t shameful or something you need to run away from. It teaches you your lessons that you learn and move on. Don’t chew over failures and ruin your life further.

There’s still time and hope.

There’s still a long way to go.

I need to remind myself that a few failures don’t define me. So I get up, learn my lessons and walk again.

  1. Wash the dirty past and work for the future

“I felt like the past was glued to me. It haunted me, as if everything I’ve done wrong, or have lost, has been inked on my existence.”

That was a false assumption.

We go round in circles, ruminate about our past mistakes, drown in regrets, and wish we had been wiser.

“Life could’ve been better if had only…” you think.

That’s just a lie.

Even if you were given a time machine to travel in the past and fix everything, you’d still make the same blunders.

That’s alright, as we’re imperfect. We always do something wrong. We make mistakes.

So what?

The worst thing you can do to yourself is staying stuck at some point that passed a long while ago and losing all that’s waiting for you.

Move past what has happened and prepare for all the things waiting for you. Curiosity about the future makes dealing with past easier.

  1. Dare to cry, and also have the courage to smile again

“I had to admit that I wasn’t Superman. At least, not as strong as I thought. Sometimes I was better-off sobbing, than moving around with a stiff chest.”

People act strong.

They hold back their tears and think they’re alright.

That’s not right.

Don’t act like life’s fine when it’s not, because that would be a big lie. Admit all that’s happening to you and your life. Lost job, broken relationship, blurry future – what’s making you restless? Just deal with it.

Cry out loud.

Let the tears flow.

Free the pain and get rid of it, because it’d make your heart ache lesser. Lesser than the hurt that bulks up over time and aches.

  1. Know what’s happening within you

“I searched for solutions everywhere but within myself. I was a coward. I knew that only I could answer myself, but didn’t have the courage to deal with the truth.”

You can’t run away from yourself.

Also, you can’t solve your problems unless you know what’s going on within you. “What’s bothering me?” ask yourself.

Your feelings, hurt, love, emotions, peace, or health – you may be having a lot of issues and causes to deal with. All of them come together to agitate you.

They’re a part of you.

Pay attention to what keeps you awake at night and resolve it.

  1. Relax, and breathe

“I’d freak out every now and then. I’d complain about little things. The messy life didn’t make sense to me. I had to teach myself that life isn’t some deadline bound project.”

Life isn’t supposed to be taken seriously. That ruins its purpose. People need to be reminded to relax.

Stop freaking yourself out.

Having worries doesn’t mean that you need solutions for all of them. Instead, convince yourself that it’s okay to have them.

Don’t lose your calm or get frustrated easily.

There’s no point.

Easier said than done maybe, but still needs to be said – calm down. Have patience. Wait until things fall into place.

  1. Don’t be a loser to yourself

“I’d judge myself based on others’ criteria. I wanted to appear good and sensible. Not much, after I realized that it comes at cost of my own values and passions.”

People criticize.

Some will always disagree with you, call you a loser, and you’ll have issues with many. That shouldn’t matter, as you cannot please everyone.

So live the life you feel is right for you, not the one that you’re bound to live. If you don’t take a stand for yourself, you see yourself as a loser and gather regrets.

The past hurts and it cannot be changed.

Such pain lasts.

It hurts forever.

The only way to avoid that pain is to live a life you wish for, even if it’s a bit odd and unconventional.

It’ll be worth it.

Better to disappoint some people who don’t want you to live your best life than to die with regrets and incomplete dreams stuck to your heart.

  1. Try to be someone who makes the world chuckle

“I made people laugh during conversations. I decided to criticize and judge less. I tried anything I knew would make a difference.”

Be good.

It reduces a lot of burden in your life.

You don’t need to manipulate yourself to be liked by others. Do things because doing them makes you happy, and not for other reasons.

Life’s easier when you allow yourself to be who you are, without feeling guilty or wrong. Life’s easier when you treat others well, remain honest, and harm no one.

You don’t need to pretend to be someone else, because you can be yourself and still be loved.

Help others, be honest, live by your values and make others believe that the world is still a good place.

  1. Appreciate all that you have

“I craved for what I didn’t have and lost meaning in all that I had. Things, relations, and even my own beliefs.”

We’re all a bit greedy, always asking for more out of life. That’s seen as normal. That’s how we grow and achieve more.

However, we only disappoint ourselves when we stop caring about what we already have in the quest for wanting something new.

Life is easier when you aren’t desperately hungry and chasing your lust, but feel happy having what you own. You’ve got a lot to be grateful for.

No matter where you are and what you have, you can always complain. That would only disappoint you. So rather be grateful and cherish little things.

  1. Live by some values and principles … or else you’ll be lost

“I needed to look back and confirm my decisions every time I did something. Once I defined my values and principles, life seemed easier. My doubts vanished.”

Life’s random.

It’s hard to figure out what you want or what you’re supposed to do, as you feel lost and make mistakes. You go astray.

Then how are you supposed to deal with it?

There’s a way to fix that – to have some principles and values to abide by.

Those little beliefs act like directions which take us to the roads that are right for you, so you don’t feel bad about the decisions you make.

  • “I won’t deceive people when doing work or business.”
  • “I’d stay intensely honest in all my relationships.”
  • “I’d not do what hurts my conscience.”

Those were some of my values and beliefs. I remained loyal to them and life seemed better. The moment you decide what your values are, you’d know what you need to do in life.

  1. Stop running away from the truth

“Sometimes, I’d behave like my faults didn’t matter. I acted innocent, even if I knew I had done wrong. My conscience always knew I was running away.”

You can’t change what has happened by closing your eyes.

Acting ignorant only hurts.

The farther you push away the truth you find repulsive, the more it concerns you. It follows you like your shadow. It doesn’t go away unless you admit it.

So do it.

  • Understand the excuses you keep making
  • Eat the words you used to blame others for your faults
  • Accept the failures you said weren’t yours

Admit what’s happening to you. That’s the only best way to deal with the truth and move towards a fresh start.

  1. Accept your flaws

“I thought I needed to learn extraordinary skills, achieve great success, and be spectacular to be able to love myself. Not really, though. Accepting my flaws was enough.”

You’re not perfect.

Know this.

Believing that you’re perfect is fatal because the lie itself dissolves. That’s when it hurts the most because you find yourself incapable of handling it.

Knowing yourself is better than pretending like there’s nothing you lack. We’re humans. We’re fallible. We can’t be great at everything at once.

If you want to be stronger, you need to embrace your weaknesses. Running away from them only brittles you. Then, you break.

The best way to avoid breaking your pride and expectations is to know what you lack.

  1. Believe in yourself and the future

“I always wanted to know what the future held. Now, I’m somewhat patient. I believe that the future has something good, and I wait.”

The road is always blurred.

You may do your best to control circumstances, and try creating an ideal life. Still, there will always be something beyond your control.

So when you’re going through hard times and feel disappointed, don’t think that you’ve hit the wall. Eventually, life fixes itself. Time heals. You get better.

Until then, be patient.

Give yourself and life some more time.

That’s what people who place their hand on your shoulder mean when they say everything’s going to be alright.

  1. Make peace with your past

“I knew that my past cannot be separated from me. So I had to learn from it, and work for future while dealing with it.”

Don’t ignore the past. Don’t run away from it. Don’t hide from it. Just admit that it’s there and that it has been a part of your life.

Bad or good, your past has gone. So make peace with it.

Because unless you don’t examine it, you remain anxious. You prevent some wounds from healing. You remain stuck in the old webs.

  1. Spend time with your loved ones

“Sometimes, I didn’t even need a solution. I just wanted to be around my people. That made everything better.”

There’s no practical side to everything, but love and care can be your best medicines.

Whether you feel down in life or depressed, the time spent with the people you love could be your best antidote.

That lightens the heart and rinses the ache. What else do you need when you’re crying out for help, except love?

Now, you may find love through your friendships, or friends, or people you spend your life with.

  1. Feed the optimist … and wait for sunshine

“I have no control over my negative thoughts. But that doesn’t concern me, because I have this tiny belief that life’s going to be better.”

All feel pain.

All suffer.

All overcome.

That’s how life continues for the whole of humanity. The best things we can do when life seems miserable is to cling to hope and wait for better days.

Bad times come and go.

Hope is forever.

So keep believing that there’s always a brighter side to everything – because there is. You’d see the silver linings, but before that, wait for the sunshine.

That’s a mix of good and bad advice

Maybe.

I don’t know how everyone overcomes pains in life, and I’m still learning. I can only experience life, look at others, and try to come up with something sensible.

Yet, what I wish for you right now is that you patiently hold on to life with courage. Sooner or later, you won’t feel a bit of pain which may be hurting you right now.

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