Let me give you a very effective recipe for "getting sick as soon as possible": just go and try to fix other people's problems!
I'm not kidding! Always trying to come up with solutions to problems that aren't yours is a dangerous road to follow. Why is that? First, because you are dwelling in the energy field of another person, and you don't belong there. Second, because while being in another's energy field where you don't belong, you cannot be present in your own energy field. So you're making two mistakes at the same time.
Always ask yourself, "Whose problem is it anyway?" If the answer is "his" or "hers," then do not interfere! Never help when you have not been asked to help! We are talking about personal issues, of course, not about life threatening situations. When your neighbor's house is burning down, you should immediately provide assistance. Or when someone has been hit by a car, then you shouldn't first figure out whose problem it is. In cases like this you will instinctively help out.
But in all other situations, the rule is: keep out of problems that don't belong to you! Only if you are really longing to bear a huge load on your shoulders, only if you enjoy carrying heavy weights and having backaches, then indeed should you keep trying to resolve other people's problems. The golden rule for those who have the tendency to help too much is: don't help at all! Unless you are explicitly asked to help, AND if you feel like it! In all other cases you are not really helping the other, but you are interfering.
Most of the time helping someone is an excuse, so that you can keep busy and forget about the emptiness inside yourself. In this case you are "using" the other to fill your own emptiness. In other cases wanting to help may be a control mechanism. By helping the other you are actually eclipsing the other's life. How many mothers go on washing their son's clothes even after he has turned thirty? How many mothers keep overshadowing the lives of their grown-up children? Mum should return to her own life and give her children some space to grow up and find out for themselves. If you're always by their side, always there "helping out," then you are casting a shadow on their life, because you are blocking some of the sunlight. Make way and let them bask in the sun without interference.
Don't help, unless help is asked for and you really feel like lending a hand. Don't propose to help, but let the other ask you. If you are offering help all the time, then you are preventing others from having their necessary and valuable learning experience: they must learn how to resolve problems by themselves. They must learn how to generate energy by themselves. If you're always around, they will never bother to find a creative solution to their problems, because you're keeping them from becoming more mature and independent.
Some people always interfere with other people's business, under the guise of helping out. But there are also people who always look for others to help them out, rather than doing it themselves. If people, even those people close to you, are always waiting for you to help them out, then say "no" if you feel they should get out of this mess by themselves. This sounds rather harsh, I know. However, letting your teenagers or grown-up children struggle to resolve their issues by themselves, is an act of love! Your heart may be hurting for the time being, but you also know that if you let them handle things by themselves, they will learn the most valuable lesson there is: "I can do this all by myself!"
So step aside, and let them discover their own inner strength. Observe, watch, be at the ready for if things get out of hand, but don't interfere. To say it cruelly: it's not your problem, it's theirs! Your heart may be bleeding, but don't pay the rent for your 25 year old son. Let him look for a job by himself. Don't give him a job at the same bank where daddy's working! That would be too easy, and you would be confirming his idea that daddy is always around to fill in the blanks. No! Son dear should learn to fill in the blanks himself. If he has to work a job in the factory to be able to pay the bills at the end of the month, then let him do so. Even if it hurts you watching this play out, and even if it's hard on him as well. Don't take this important learning opportunity away from him! Loving is not the same as helping. Stepping aside is much more an act of love than always being right there to do whatever it is you think they cannot!
Their self-esteem grows with the ability to resolve problems all by themselves. Don't take this opportunity away from them. Ask yourself, "Whose problem is it?" You are NOT the one to resolve the problems of your children! Let them do it! Let them feel what life is really about, and let them feel the satisfaction of being able to find their own solutions.
Don't get involved in other people's problems. Your boss, colleagues, husband, mother-in-law, friends and children, let them all find their own solutions. Their problems belong to them, not to you! The appropriate solutions have to come from them, not from you! This way you will save a lot of energy enabling you to move on with your own life. Trying to resolve problems that do not belong to you is an express-ticket to severe fatigue and depression! You don't have to interfere, and you shouldn't. Give everyone the freedom to resolve his own problems. And you? Resolve your own! You don't have any problems? Thank God for that! Now go on and LIVE! Written by Ineke Van Lint, psychologist. My goal is to help you achieve success and happiness. Accomplish your mission on earth and love yourself. Two free e-courses at http://www.theenthusiasm.com
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