HOW TO SURVIVE A CRISIS
According to the Encarta dictionary, a crisis is a situation or period in which things are very uncertain, difficult and painful, especially at a time when action must be taken to avoid a complete disaster or breakdown.
Many young people, as well as older ones, have found themselves in a crisis period at one time or the other, and what decision did you take if you have ever experienced a crisis period in your life?
The definition identifies the period as difficult and painful and warrants a fast and effective decision to avoid the extremes of the situation which could lead to undesirable consequences.
In a situation where a fast and effective decision is not taken disaster takes place.
A typical example happened in a community in Ghana recently where a Savings and Loans Company had its assets frozen by the Central Bank for having disregarded guidelines and regulations relating to its operations. The frozen assets included depositors’ monies, which mean depositors could not have access to their monies. This situation brought much difficulty upon some of the depositors and in their desperation, committed suicide.
All people are vulnerable to having crisis situations since its all not about money but about life in general. It’s not all suicides which are money related.
Work, relationship issues, conflict, hunger, natural disasters and a lot more can all lead to crises situations.
I am just going to focus on issues which I consider as manageable by you as an individual and how you can cope with them to survive the situations.
I shall first of all relate my own personal experience of a period which I can refer to as my crisis period.
It was in my 3rd year of employment as accounts clerk in a reputable financial institution in Accra. One day my boss was invited by the Police to a give statement about an accounting transaction. About a week later I was invited too. I thought they were going to ask me a question and let me go back to work. But they did not allow me to return to work or home that day. They detained and released me the following day and ordered me to report myself daily.
LETTER OF SUSPENSION FROM WORK
I went home the following day, devastated. The following day my employer handed me a letter of suspension from work ‘until Police investigations were completed’.
I had married a young, beautiful woman the previous year and she was pregnant at the time this happened to me. She was worried I didn’t return home the previous night and said she thought I had gone to sleep with another girl.
At the end of 2 months stay in the house life began to bore me. My wife delivered at the time but unfortunately for us lost the baby at the hospital.
My emotional status was that of mixed feelings. I thought God in his wisdom did not allow the baby to survive knowing my state of mind and financial incapacitation. I did not know whether to remain happy or sad, but the unsavory condition at the time made sadness rule over joy in my life.
In the meantime I was reporting to the Police twice a week. Each time, I expected them to tell me something positive to enable me to return to work. But my expectations were far, far away. To me it looked like some conspiracy to stop my progress in life as a young man. This, we often attributed to the witches in the forests but not to the Police in the cities.
I needed to get back to work to be able to care for my wife but this damn ‘police case’ was preventing me. I was desperate and the Police would not tell me a word about what was going on.
SIGNS OF INSECURITY
Soon it was six months and my wife began to show signs of insecurity. She also became very uncertain, not knowing what was going to happen to me eventually. She told me quite frankly that she was just a young lady and could not begin life the way things were going for us.
I always tried to assure her of my love but it was all words as there was no money to back it up.
One day she told me she wanted to visit her elder sister who lived about 150 kilometers away from Accra. I smelled a rat about this decision and told her to abandon her plans but she would not listen. She finally left against my will.
I knew I was partly to be blamed for her decision because I was thinking too much about my own predicament and did very little to comfort her on the loss of our baby.
My next visit to the Police station, which was now once a week, left me in a more desperate situation than ever.
‘’I have seen you. Report next week’’ was all the investigator told me. In my desperation, I felt like finding an object to hit his head.
I walked away dejectedly, determined to find another job for my survival.
SEPARATION WITH WIFE
Two weeks later, I traveled to find my beloved wife. She had arrived at her sister’s house. When she asked me if the situation had changed, I couldn’t lie and told her ‘’still the same, but I was finding another job’’. Her facial expression told me it was all over between us long before she reluctantly opened her mouth to say it. She bid me a half-hearted good-bye without seeing me off when I was leaving.
It was as if I had lost my job and was struggling about how to survive. Then in the midst of my frustrations, my beloved wife whom I cherished so much, and had expected to comfort me, also left me in the lurch. It was like having double powerful slaps to my face the way soldiers do to thieves who are caught stealing at the barracks.
When I left her all the feeling I had was about was a suicide attempt, nothing but suicide. In spite of that I didn’t have the slightest courage to go near a rope to hang my neck. On my way back I prayed that the bus on which I was travelling would be involved in a road crash so that I get killed. Unfortunately, God did not answer me and I arrived back safely.
I went to pursue a new job and was successful, but was not allowed to start work because I had a pending case with the Police. Oh, gosh!
EFFORTS AT WORKING
What was I going to do next? I thought I had to do something on my own so I got a piece of land to hire to grow vegetables. I went ahead to do it but in the end I spent more money (which I had borrowed) doing it than I realized from it, so I abandoned it.
Then I thought I could write something newspaper editors might be interested and so I took my pen and started something. My first article got published and I felt good. It was okay and I managed with that option for the rest of the period that my crisis lasted. I discovered that I was better off with the pen than with the hoe and machete.
On my own accord I chose to report to the police once a month.
It was past some 14 months before I was exonerated. It was a big relief for me though very belated and many things had gone bad for me.
My employers reinstated me but considering the crisis I had gone through I was no more interested working there.
I went to work at the place where I had earlier secured a job.
There are 4 types of crises that can make you go crazy if you aren’t cautious. These are work, accommodation, relationship issues and loss of possessions.
Let us examine them briefly:
If through whatever circumstances you lose your job, you will be under severe stress especially if you have children among your dependents. How can you cope with life if you’re the breadwinner and you lose the bread that survives the children?
When you have been ejected from your rented apartment for any reason and do not yet have a place you can call your home, you can be a very restless person.
a place to call your home
Just imagine it if you have never experienced it and you can know the level of stress involved.
Love matters are matters of the heart and if not handled well, it can lead to fatality. If a man loses his lover to another man, jealousy can lead to either murder or suicide when the loser is taken to the extremes of emotions.
LOSS OF PROPERTY
Loss of property through fire or theft can bring stress upon you, especially when the property lost is your main source of livelihood.
GUIDELINES FOR COPING
Any of the above issues needs self-discipline to be able to cope with the stress involved.
The challenges of life are called difficulties. It is how you face those difficulties that determine the sort of person you are.
Though it is said that there is no true love without jealousy, I am advising that jealousy is a negative emotion which does you no good, and so try as much as possible to wean yourself from it if circumstances make you feel so.
Jealousy can cause you to do bad to somebody or to yourself and in the end you will not profit from it.
Self-control is the ability to control your own behavior, especially in terms of reactions and impulses. Sometimes young men try to show off their virility where they feel a situation is not to their liking and like to prove their strength or inability to tolerate ‘nonsense’.
When you find yourself in a tight corner be creative to find a way out. In my situation I tried doing many things including turning my hobby gardening into farming (though I didn’t succeed) and articles writing (which I succeeded).
Sometimes opportunities come to us disguised as problems. When you take the initiative to solve a problem you may find that even a mistake may lead to something else to unlock a new opportunity to do something. Some discoveries were made through mistakes.
These days when somebody is labelled as being smart, it usually has a negative tag like being clever at stealing or having the ability to defraud others and the like.
Being a smart person here implies that you are quick at recognizing opportunities in difficult situations and can make the best out of the situation to your own advantage or that of others.
In my situation I was smart in taking a decision to find another job.
In certain crisis situations you need to have courage to take bold decisions that will extricate you from the situation or else you will be bogged down to misery.
Circumstances can force you to eat cassava instead of your regular yam. You may not always have your desired meal or always be embedded in your comfort zone. During a period of crisis you may not get your normal lifestyle. You must be prepared to forego usual luxuries in order to endure harsh situations which come unexpectedly.
When you are in a crisis, know that it is a temporary situation and that all those difficult moments shall soon pass away. There is always sunshine after the clouds.
Do not be bogged down by the situation, to lead you into misery, but be optimistic and look forward to the brighter side of life.
Do not lose hope in your ability to do something good. Have confidence in yourself and your ability to manage your difficult situation. Your ability to manage the situation determines the sort of person you are. A robust person is one who is strong enough to withstand stormy times. Be robust and feel confident.
Finally for situations in which no action can be taken you have no option than to allow time to pass. Time heals wounds and makes you forget pains. At a later time I realized my folly in wishing the crash of my bus. I would have been dead for nothing. Soon I was back on my feet, reliving my life.
Stop and just look back. Try to remember a very painful situation you went through that gave you sleepless nights. It could be some months or years now, how do you feel now towards the same situation that harassed you?
Never think of suicide under any of the above circumstances, it’s a stupid thing to do.
Time also brings changes to a person’s life, but you have to plan the change at times, so it can go your way.
In my last post I exposed the girls with signs they do which show they are taking their boyfriends for a free ride. Check out what the boys also do in the next post.
[vivafbcomment url=”http://www.ugrowingolder.com/index.php/2015/11/19/how-to-survive-a-crisis/” width=”550″ count=”on” num=”100″ countmsg=”Comment”]