The Japanese word Arugamama translates literally into “As it is.” It is the basis for a form of psychotherapy called Morita Therapy
which teaches us to detach from our uncomfortable emotions or negative thoughts and accept them as they are.
The past week for me was an important reminder to practice this. I went in two Fridays ago to have Lasik, but ended up walking out with PRK
, which is a much more painful version of Lasik that has a longer recovery period. The debilitating pain caused an almost reflexive thought about why I rushed into it.
However, the fact stood that I realized the anger I had towards myself was a choice and brewing on the past was doing me no good. I was reminded by Seneca that while anger may very well be an involuntary instant behavior, it is actually a 4-step process:
Realization: The moment you realize you jumped into a decision you regret.
Indignation: The feeling of contempt at yourself for having made the decision.
Condemnation: Blaming yourself or others for the consequences.
Retribution: You doing something to exact revenge.
Even if anger is an involuntary response, like a doctor hitting your knee with a rubber hammer, we are empowered at any point within this long four step process to accept that the cause of our anger is out of our control; even if it was our own decision that caused the anger.
By the end of the week, my vision had started to improve, and it was easier to rationalize the experience in positive light knowing I won’t be wearing glasses in the foreseeable future.
Lesson? Recognize when you get caught up in your own anxieties. Don’t push your negative feelings away, but sit with them and understand where they’re coming from. Accept the present reality, no matter the circumstance and trust your future self that you will find a way.
🍺 to a great week ahead!