Guidelines So That Your Actions Are Satisfactory To You

Guidelines so that your actions are satisfactory to you

It is increasingly heard that people who are going through an emotional problem are advised to “do things.”

In my practice and in other areas of my life, I meet people who have been recommended by the rule “do, fill your life with actions, just don’t stay paralyzed.”

But A life with personal meaning does not consist of doing things for the sake of doing them.. It is not about filling your suitcase with things, filling it with whatever or what others consider. It consists of filling your suitcase with the things that matter to you, that represent you.

Everyday dissatisfaction

Thich Nhat Hanh says, “My actions are my only true experiences.”

Some people have become great “doers”, even so much so that if they have nothing to do they become distressed. Filling their days with endless tasks, but without stopping to assess whether they are actions that enrich them, that bring them closer to the life they want, if they are actions that connect them. They only do them in response to the norm “fill your life, do.”

When the person trapped by “doing” finds themselves again (there is always a moment with a gap of inaction in which consciousness takes the opportunity to show you how your life is going) it is likely that they will feel a vital trace of dissatisfaction, like a internal emptiness, with the feeling of not arriving, of running without reaching, without stopping, trapped by the rush to go anywhere.

The emotional void

Viktor E. Frankl comments: “Sunday neurosis, that type of depression that afflicts people who realize the lack of content in their lives when the rush of the busy week is over and the emptiness within them manifests.”

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I call it “the void of action void of coherence.” Even if the action coincided with the person, being outside of the person’s intentional and conscious choice, the person is not aware of his value. And beyond the action, there is the meaning of it, if it truly represents you.

Many “Does” are governed by autopilot, by inertia, by escape from a feeling, for an infinite number of reasons, that have nothing to do with what one would choose to do.

I’m not talking about big actions, I’m talking about the day to day, about the greatness that is in living, that is in the small actions of the day. As a gesture that connects you, for example, with respect, if respect were an important value for you. This gesture can range from recycling a piece of paper, saying thank you, treating clients with kindness at work, listening without interrupting, not dirtying the environment… Like a kiss you give a child, looking into their eyes, paying attention to their face, feeling his skin and without telling him “come on, hurry up” giving him an automatic kiss empty of presence.

You could fill pages and pages with ideas; This is what personal values ​​have, they are directions, and there are always ways to cultivate them. They say that in what is common is what is extraordinary, that what happens is that sometimes, we do not realize it.

Actions from values

Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) tells us about Committed Action: set goals guided by values ​​and engage in actions to develop them. Carrying out actions guided by our most personal and significant values, actions in which we are present and committed.

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Only through the actions in which we are present and connected, can we establish a meaningful life.

What can we do with this doing?

Ask yourself about your values, about your coherence, about what truly matters to you.. How do I want to be? Regardless of my thoughts and emotions, how I want to be in this situation, with this person, with this event, with this place… What flavor do I want to leave behind?

For example: with my son, how do I want to be as a mother/father? How do I want to be by your side? So that? Let’s say your answer is: I want to give him affection and help him be independent and love himself. Being aware of how you want to be brings you closer to the compass to choose actions consistent with you.

Let’s assume a day-to-day situation: daughter learning to put on shoes. If I tie his shoes in a hurry, am I helping him to be independent? If I correct him very frequently and say that he is clumsy, do I help him love himself? And to be independent? And with me, am I getting closer to the mother/father I want to be?

But… What if I let him try to tie his shoes, dedicating a stipulated time, without rushing, with permission so that he can make mistakes and with the opportunity to try again, doing it with complicity and with signs of affection? Do you think that action makes sense to you? Is it consistent with you, with your values?

The what is of great importance, but in many cases the how is even more important.. How do I want to do it? Imagine that your answer is: with love and patience. Now look within yourself, in your personal baggage you have multiple actions to choose from. Get out of the shoulds, the have-whats and listen to your “wants.”

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There is a significant difference between telling you “I should do…” “I have to…” to telling you “I want to do…” and listening to you. “I want” takes you out of the crushing, paralyzing demands and brings you closer to what truly matters, nourishes and connects you.

Filling our lives with actions that represent us

I am a psychologist specializing in ACT, and an accredited Mindfulness teacher for Respira Vida breathworks, in addition to directing the Purificación Estrada Center for Psychology and Mindfulness. I also instruct mental health professionals in the acquisition of practical tools so that they can apply exercises and dynamics in therapy that lead to real solutions in the lives of their patients. My job as a therapist is to help people choose, to help people connect with themselves, to help them be more free.

I am currently writing my first book, full of experience, practice and usefulness for life. A book that helps clarify, that does not tell you what you have to do, that respects you and helps you connect or help others connect with their values, to choose and get closer to the person you want, who they want to be.

A book based on scientific evidence, nuanced from one’s own clinical and personal experience, founded on rigorous training, and above all a book that is being built With-Science and With-Heart. You can see my contact information by clicking here.