Overcoming Detachment

Posted: March 26, 2011 in Psychology
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Overcoming Detachment

As negative personality types go, detachment is one of the better ones. If you are detached from life, at least there is little suffering. Those caught in addictions or various forms of greed often cycle in and out of good and bad states of mind. People with anger management and other anti-social personalities not only suffer themselves but inflict suffering on everyone around them.

If you feel you are detached from your life or know someone who has this problem, I’ll try to give you some insight.

Are You Detached?

You can tell you’ve become detached from life when you are just going through the motions. If nothing ever changes and hasn’t for a long time, you may have fallen into detachment. Have you been working at the same job for years and have no plans to move on or up? Is your marriage only continuing for the sake of the kids? Have your leisure activities and entertainments been the same for a long time with no new interests?

If you answered yes to one of these questions, you may have fallen into a detached state. If it’s yes to every question, you need some motivation to bring your life back to life.


How Do You Become Detached?

You lose interest in life when you fail to achieve your important goals. If you only made one try and gave up, that’s a different problem; apathy. Detachment is the result of many attempts at reaching your goals, many failures and a final acceptance that you’re not going to succeed.

The more times you try and fail, the more depressing it becomes and the more it hurts you. If you stop caring, you stop hurting. “It’s not important any more. It was a silly dream anyway.” Every time you’ve tried to do what will make you truly happy, it has resulted in unhappiness. You settle for contentment and complacency.


Escaping From Detachment

To escape from detachment, think of it as a needed break from your struggle. You’ve had a chance to recover from past failures and now it’s time to achieve your goals. This is not another try. This is it. You are going to succeed this time. How can I say that? I don’t even know you.

The reason we become detached is because we follow a single path toward our goals. When that fails, we feel defeated. The answer is to work on multiple paths.

Try to find a job or career that is in line with your goals. If it’s not alreay right on track, you should be working on finding a different job. You may need to change jobs several times to before you are in the right position.

Find ways to put your goals into practice in your personal life. Then, when your job takes you down a dead end, you can still be working toward your goals.

Keeping learning. The more difficult your goals, the more there is to learn. When everything else falls apart, you can keep your dreams alive because you are becoming more of an expert. Everything you do to work toward your goal is learning. You will not just learn the right things to do, but also the wrong things that will lead to dead ends.

Any time you can’t move forward, move sideways. You may need to change jobs, change studies or change social groups.

Your goal will not always be in sight. Don’t give up because of setbacks. You know you’re moving ahead because you’re learning and taking action. Delays are a part of life. Keep up the struggle and it will pay off.


Can Detachment Be a Good Thing?

I say that detachment is a negativity, but it is only negative in that you don’t make any positive movement toward your goals. There are more serious negativities where goals aren’t even in the picture.

People who have been hurt too many times may replace their goals with addictions. They settle for pleasure instead of happiness. Some will settle on minor easy goals, like collecting. It’s easy to build up a collection of books, CDs, DVDs, or even every bit of trash that comes through your front door. Others collect money, thinking that if they amass enough cash they will be happy. These negativities leave you wandering through the foothills of life never seeing that you can be more.

And it gets worse. Vengeance is the worst of the negativities. It manifests itself as anger, cruelty and other forms of anti-social behavior. If you fall into a hateful negativity, you only want to destroy the world.

If you are trapped in one of these more serious negativities, you will be lucky if you can change enough to become detached. For true transformation, you need to find a good life goal. That may be asking a lot. The most important step is escaping from your depressing negativity.


Where Now?

Reading one inspirational article is not going to turn your life around. You need to take action toward your goal. Remember your dreams. Think about your past attempts and the minor successes along the way. Tell people what you are going to do. Refresh your knowledge. Develop an action plan. You know you can do it, so do it.

Article text copyright 2011 David Arthur Smith. All Rights Reserved.

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