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How long before you give up?

You're going to give up eventually and there is no chance you'll win.

Why not do it sooner?

Or maybe not even start the fight?

“When you argue with reality, you always lose – but only 100% of the time.”

-Byron Katie

How long does it take you to adjust to what is when what is, or what you thought would be, changes?

Reality created a traffic jam in your way to the appointment


You're driving to an appointment and you get stuck in an unexpected traffic jam. How long are you going to be upset before you give up and accept that you're stuck in a traffic jam?

Reality gave your client a breakdown that became your breakdown

You plan your day. You're really looking forward to getting several things done on your list. Your client calls you and they've got a breakdown that you have to handle right away. You're not going to get those things done today that you were planning to do. How long are you going to be upset before you give up and accept that you now have a new plan for the day that's aligned with the new reality?

Reality arranged for your wife or husband to file for divorce

You planned to love each other and stay together forever. Reality had her plans. They turned out to be different from yours. When your spouse filed for divorce, you found out about reality's new plans regarding your relationship with your spouse. How long are you going to be upset before you give up and accept that your wife or husband has filed for divorce?

Reality arranged for you to lose your job...or lose your leg...or for your child to die

Society and psychologists all agree you should not give up right away. You should continue to fight and argue with reality for a while, although they would not put it that way. Many experts think it is appropriate and "normal" to go through the stages of denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and then finally to acceptance, often taking a year or more to do so. If one of these occurs in your life, how long are you going to be upset before you give up and accept the new reality? By the way, this list of five stages of grief is the shortlist. Some psychologists distinguish up to twelve stages. 

Giving up quickly is great, but never starting the fight is the best

People often think that "not fighting with reality" means not taking whatever actions you could take and would like to take toward the possibility of having your future be a way that you would prefer and are excited about. Not at all. In fact, not fighting with reality will give you a solid place to stand with open eyes to have the best chance of creating that exciting new future.

Always starting freshly from the current reality

For example, let's consider the circumstance where your wife or husband has filed for divorce. That doesn't necessarily mean that you will get divorced. That doesn't necessarily mean that you still couldn't have a great married future together. If you still have reasons to believe that is possible and that you're interested in that possible future, you could go for it, taking into full account your current new knowledge and the current circumstances. You could decide that you'd like to go for it. You know it's risky. You might be successful and you might not. You're willing to accept that risk and know that you would be okay with yourself and with your spouse if you're not able to get that.


Or you could make another choice with this new reality. You could commit yourself to create a great divorce both for you and your spouse. 

You have a lot of power and many options starting from a full acceptance of the current reality.

Reality can be on your side if you don't fight with it

“Reality is always kinder than your thinking.”

-Byron Katie

Fighting with reality is a well-entrenched habit for most of us. It's reinforced by culture. It's reinforced by religion. It's what makes life "hard and meaningful." As long as you continue to live in the HOGAB, fighting with reality is required in order to be a good guy.

If you've had enough of the suffering, if you've had enough of beating your head against the wall, check out some approaches that will assist you in leaving that house and declaring your freedom. Here are some links to start with.

Undoing shoulds: introduction

Undoing expectations

Undoing betrayal

Are positive expectations good?

You are powerless

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