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3: Analyze Your Circumstances

Potential Scenarios: What if You Do Nothing?

consider alternative scenarios

Sometimes the shock and stress of an unexpected event can put you in panic mode. There are situations where you really must act in the moment – for example, if you are having a heart attack or your house is on fire. There are other situations that might trigger intense feelings and thoughts that you believe you must respond to quickly, but that really don’t require immediate action. And, in fact, you might do more harm than good if you act without first having all necessary information.

A Mother’s Story

When their son was diagnosed with autism, Kim and her husband not only had to process the shock and fear over what this would mean for their family, but they also had to deal with other people’s reactions.

puzzle pieces

“People told me that I had to take action immediately — and that if I didn’t, my son would be permanently damaged, and it would all be my fault,” Kim says. “Thankfully, I allowed myself time to recover from the shock, and to get my bearings.”

Now Kim counsels other parents in similar situations to step back and assess their options before jumping to conclusions.

“If you don’t give yourself time to adjust to the new circumstances, you can wear yourself out with worry and stress, which can actually make it harder to see the situation clearly,” Kim says. “Sometimes the best action is to do nothing — at least for a little while.”

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