Fixing things. Does anyone else deal with wanting to fix things for others, solve their problems, or help them feel better? Well, I will confess I am bad to do this, and it can be a real problem for me. I can get preoccupied with wanting to help someone else feel better or solve a problem that I can ignore my own need to feel better.
When I was dealing with severe anxiety, I had a short term hospitalization. It was during this time, my eyes were opened to the fact I have an unhealthy desire to fix others. During a group session a counselor mentioned the importance of focusing on ourselves. He said that it’s easy to want to fix someone else because it helps you avoid dealing with your own stuff. When I heard that it was an ‘Aha’ moment, because I was guilty of doing that very thing. Hearing that helped me to focus on myself and my treatment during my stay at the hospital. Of course, that flipped switch didn’t take away the hurt I would feel seeing others hurting. So I had to find a way to help myself heal, while not letting other’s problems occupy and distract me.
I knew that I couldn’t just ignore others that appeared to need help. So, instead I chose some simple things to do for them that would not distract me from taking care of myself.
Pray – I would say a prayer whenever I saw someone I was drawn to help. For years, I had mistakenly and arrogantly thought I needed to be actively involved in fixing others. When in reality, I needed to lift others up in prayer and let God take care of it. Because only God really knows how to fix the situations and people. Not me. So I learned the importance of asking God to help someone and use me in the situation as He sees fit.
Smile – When I saw someone who looked hurt, lost or confused, I would smile and say “hello”. As simple as that sounds it had a positive effect on others.
Write a Note – I love to write letters and send notes, and for the first time in a long time I had to time to do it. So I did.
I discovered that those 3 simple things had a powerful impact on me and on those around me. Some people expressed to me how much they appreciated the short simple note I gave to them. Others shared how my smiling at them helped them feel more comfortable upon arriving at the hospital. In some of the notes I wrote, I would mention that I had said prayer for them. Mentioning this to one person started a bible study that eventually included a few others.
My time at the hospital taught me a lot. Not only did it teach me some skills to manage my stress level better and the need to balance myself, it also taught me that helping others doesn’t always require me to get in there and sacrifice myself for them. I learned that small gestures can show God’s love and plant seeds. Besides, it ain’t my job to fix ’em, because God’s got that covered.
First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way1 Timothy 2:1-2
By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.John 13:35
But now abideth faith, hope, love, these three; and the greatest of these is love.1 Corinthians 13:13
Let all that ye do be done in love.1 Corinthians 16:14
Until next time
Lots of love to you and yours