To try to be happy at all times for your entire life without ever having your psychological wellbeing tested would be an unrealistic and unobtainable goal of a perfect life that no human being is every likely to experience.
Everyone will encounter and go through significant life landmark events and experiences that can bring about or leave behind unsettling thoughts (such as doubts, confusion, insecurities or pessimism), or unsettling feelings (such as anxiety, anger, frustration or sadness), that will test your sense of feeling able to be positive, able to cope, functional and balanced.
That is ok, what’s more, when you think about it, sometimes that reaction is to be entirely expected and managed right, is something that can help a person develop insight and wisdom which in turn can guide positive actions in the future.
If you fail an important exam, are leaving home for the first time to go to college, have missed out on that promotion you were banking on to help pay the bills, are planning to get married or take on a new career path, are having problems with your kids, are battling physical illness, or have just ended a relationship, it is very natural to go through a period of psychological unrest as your thoughts and feelings experience, process, adjust and settle again.
Of maybe you are lugging around the baggage of a past life landmark has not been dealt with yet? If so, it is not surprising that the unresolved thoughts and feelings associated to it and the energy required for you to keep carrying them along though life with you might be hindering your efforts to achieve psychological wellbeing in the here-and-now and pursue your full potential.
A life landmark is a significant event, or experience in your life that punctuates and shapes your personal life narrative that has the potential to put significant demands and pressure on your psychological wellbeing (you ability to be positive, able to cope, functional and balanced), and could have a substantial impact on it both at the time and subsequently into your future.
This can include examples such as:
- An abusive childhood or traumatic school experience.
- Becoming a teenager.
- Difficulties coming to terms with and expressing your gender identity or sexual preferences.
- The end of a relationship through separation or death.
- Becoming a parent or seeing your children move away and forge their own lives independently of you.
- The beginning or ending of a phase/stage in your academic or professional journey.
- A significant change to your physical health and wellbeing.
It is not likely that any of us will feel happy (or without some pressure on our psychological wellbeing), all the time. We are all likely to encounter life landmarks that have the potential to leave us feeling sad, confused. stressed, despairing or overwhelmed. Providing we have the insight, wisdom, guidance and support to hand to help us get through it, and the resilience to recover, in due course the period of unrest or unhappiness passes and our psychological equilibrium returns.
If the mental or emotional reaction becomes excessive and more than we can endure, or the sense of unrest does not pass, or if we turn damaging behaviours to try to avoid, suppress or endure the psychological distress (such as addiction, social withdrawal, anti-social behaviour or some other form of self-harm), then it may be time to get help to find tools to put in your psychological toolkit to help you cope and recover.