Confronting Problems: Accept, Fight, and Distinguish

Confronting Problems: Accept, Fight, and Distinguish

Last update: 27 April, 2020

Life specializes in putting you against the ropes. Yes, we’re talking about problems that all of us have. Sometimes they’re like a bunch of rocks and other times like a bunch of papers. The weight depends a little bit on your mood. When we confront problems, we develop different strategies for dealing with them. This acceptance, fighting, and distinguishing is what we will be talking about today.

Accept what? Fight against who? Distinguish between what? The answer is unique to your own problems. Yes, today we will tell you about the importance of confronting problems and accepting what you can’t change. It’s also important to fight against what you can change and to have the intelligence to decide which of the two strategies to use.

Confronting problems with light bulbs.

Accept what you can’t change

Sometimes this can be very difficult to do. Impotence fills us with energy. Many times, this energy becomes frustration, pain, and rage. Let’s talk about pain. Pain from losing things we’ll never be able to get back. That is, the loved one you lost, the years gone by, the amputated leg, among other things.

As you grow older, you become an expert in this. As the years go by, you fill a sack of emptiness that turns your sadness into nostalgia. You end up accepting that that emptiness is a part of you.

You don’t stop loving what leaves you, despite how firmly you say your goodbyes. You don’t stop making it a part of your life story or projecting it onto the future. This is because a good part of what you’re expecting is linked to what you’ve experienced. A child who has lived surrounded by good people will believe that everyone is good. Thus, they will treat people right and will possibly be a good person.

To accept means to understand, but not only from the cognitive angle. You must also understand on an emotional level. On this plain, you have to compensate what’s left with the missed fortune of what’s now gone.

A good part of what you’re expecting is linked to what you’ve lived.

Fighting, struggling, and planning

Fighting, struggling, and planning… Investing resources and thinking about the next step. We spend four or five years studying a profession. We wait nine months for a child, hours and hours fighting cancer, seconds with our heads between our legs waiting for the next bomb to drop. And we study to pass. We look for the best doctor and the best treatment in order to be cured. It’s typical for us to survey the land and look for the safest zone.

When you understand that you have some control and that with that control you can gain something positive, you get started. This could be for difficult or easy goals. In this sense, be careful. You shouldn’t lose perspective. There are people who enjoy masochism at a high level and have a special fondness for those goals that will cause them a higher level of suffering or wear them out more. In a way, it seems that they need to suffer to live just like they need to eat or sleep.

Let’s remember that we’re talking about strategies for confronting problems. So, before fighting or struggling, it’s best to attempt to reduce the number of problems you have. Distinguish between the real problems and those that are a product of your imagination. Do away with those “I have to” and “I should”. Exercising is great, but this shouldn’t be turned into a constant suffering. Eating healthy is fantastic, but don’t fill your kitchen with things that are healthy but you don’t like to eat. Extra suffering in these cases rarely brings extra benefits. The only thing it does is increase the chances of unhappiness.

Woman walking and confronting her problems.


The capacity for acceptance and compromise is not very useful without sufficient intelligence. You must be able to distinguish which problems are worthy of one strategy and not another. As of yet, it’s not possible to bring someone back from the grave or travel to the past. These are emotional knots that are best resolved through acceptance. On the other hand, identifying that problem we want to face or change we want to make also tends to demand some part of previous acceptance. As an example, it’s difficult to force yourself to be friendlier if you don’t accept that you’re not that friendly.

In one way or another, you spend a lot of time in the lands we have described. Nevertheless, many times you find yourself at a crossroads. At these crossroads, you may not know if it’s better to fight or accept.

Let’s consider a cancer patient. At what point is acceptance a better strategy than fighting? Because of that, the patient needs to distinguish between what they should and shouldn’t do. The patient should listen to their doctors. This will help them decide what to do.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.