Dealing with the Bombshells

by Andy Wood on November 27, 2012

in Allocating Your Resources, Five LV Laws, Insight, Life Currency, LV Cycle, Principle of Abundance, Since You Asked

Old friend called yesterday.  It had been a while.

“I’m calling to ask you to pray,” she began.  “I’ve just had a bombshell dropped in my lap.”

Like you would do, I’m sure, my mind started racing at the possibilities.  Family?  Finances?  Health?  It could be anything.

I won’t tell you what hers was, but it really doesn’t matter.  What matters is that she was handed some bad news she didn’t see coming.

Kabloom!

What matters more is that she was really making some progress in some areas of her life, and this jeopardizes all that.

Kabloom again!

And what matters to you is that next time it could be you.

Have you ever noticed that when you start moving in a positive direction, life has a way of testing you out of center field with alarming or disarming stuff?  And it comes dressed in any number of ugly outfits.

Health bombshells.

Emotional bombshells such as grief or anxiety.

Job bombshells.

Financial bombshells.

Family bombshells.

(My favorite…) Church bombshells.

There are plenty of other types, but you get the point.  What do you do when life blows up in your face?  Or in your dreams or goals?  Or in your relationships?

What NOT to Do

I probably should point out a few things NOT to do.  Most of these fall into the category of “Don’t be stupid.”

For example, don’t unleash a bunch of words you will regret later.  Beware of accusing, attacking, or verbally judging someone by presuming to know their motives.  There are safe places to vent, but don’t verbally vomit just to make yourself feel better.

Don’t assume your life, career, or happiness is a thing of the past.  Bombshells may blow up your short-term assumptions, but they can only rob you of your long-term joy if you let them.

Also, don’t cut yourself off from people who care.  You may feel hurt, angry, frightened or betrayed.  You may need some time alone to sort some things out.  You may need some face time to hash things out.  But bombshell experiences are the times when true friends are revealed – don’t be stupid and push them away.

Here are a few ideas for what TO do:

Pray

Let’s start with the spiritually obvious.  Bombshells to you are no shock to God.  Course-altering disasters to you may not be His intended plan, but they certainly are in the realm of His purpose and care.  So talk to Him.  Ask Him what to do.  Tell Him how you feel.  Set your gaze on him.  And make sure to take the time listen.  Make your prayer a conversation, not a monologue.

Take a Day and Have a Spell

That’s what my Southern ancestors would call it.  Throw a fit.  Set aside some time to worry a little, mourn a little (or a lot), vent a little (see warning above), or even feel sorry for yourself.  Your temptation may be to rush into solution mode, but that’s harder to do when you’re hauling a bunch of emotional baggage.

I learned this the hard way a couple of weeks ago.  All of a sudden, one day my blood pressure shot up (that never happens), my skin got all clammy, and I started getting extremely anxious, then profoundly sad.  After a visit with my doctor we concluded that my body and emotional system had decided it was time to mourn my sister-in-law’s death after six weeks of being tough for everybody else.  (A friend had warned me about this.  Guess I wasn’t paying attention.)

Not all bombshells are created equal.  Not all spells are created equal, either.  The loss of a job or dream are one thing; the loss of a spouse or child is quite another.  Sometimes you just need more time, and that’s okay.  Take the time.

Focus on “What,” Not “Why”

You may or may not ever learn why your bombshell dropped.  Either way, it’s not likely to serve you as you start looking to move forward.  To do that, you need to ask “what” questions.  Specifically, you need a Plan A, Plan C, and Plan D.

Plan D are the detail questions.  Who needs to be contacted?  What needs to be taken care of immediately?  What happens next?  These questions are important to get you moving somewhere, anywhere.  The old adage is that it’s easier to steer a moving vehicle than one that’s sitting still.

Plan C stands for calamity questions.  Okay, so your thoughts have raced to the worst possible scenario.  Bombshells have a way of doing that.  So go ahead and develop a disaster plan.  You probably won’t need all of it.  But make one anyway.  Avoid pointless statements like, “I just could never make it without _______,” or “I just couldn’t handle it if _______ ever happened.” Yes you could.  Plan C considers how.

Plan A is the surprise – “A” stands for “aspirations.”  Bombshells have a way of exposing or creating new dreams and aspirations.  Yes, these come last.  But they do come, and you need to give yourself permission to have them.  The late Dick Clark is a great example of this.  His brother was killed in World War II, and Dick found comfort in listening to the radio.  Out of that a Plan A emerged – to entertain people in much the same way that disc jockeys and musicians had done for him.

Many a career or life-changing development started out as somebody’s bombshell.  Your situation is no different.

Ask for Help

How many times have you heard somebody say this, or said it yourself:  “Let me know if there’s anything I can do.”

Translation:  “I have no idea how to help you, but I’m willing to try if you’ll help me.”

So help them!  Let them know what you need.  It helped me during one bombshell period in my life just to start making lists – and one of those lists was a long list of people.  I began reaching out to anyone I thought could help me or anyone who offered some of their time.  This did two things:  it kept me from isolating myself in self-pity, and it ultimately led me to solutions and new aspirations.

Tell me some crap like “I don’t want to be a burden,” and I’ll fight ya.  The bottom line is, the people who don’t care won’t LET you be a burden, and the people who do care are ALREADY burdened.  You’re just giving them something tangible to do.

Pray

Can’t say that one enough.  At each stage, each encounter, each idea, each onslaught of emotions, keep listening, keep talking, keep casting your burden on the Lord.  He will sustain you.

Okay, What Now?

This question, simple as it sounds, is the sign of healthy bombshell management.  (Hmmm.  “Bombshell Management.”  Sheesh.  I should start a seminar or something.)

Anyway, when you or the people who love you are gently asking that question now, today, and you are seeking answers to that, then regardless of how you are feeling today, you are moving forward.

I feel like staying in bed all day.  Okay.  What now?

I just want to hurt somebody the same way they hurt me.  Okay.  What now?

I just don’t know what to do.  Okay.  What now?

I feel as though God is a million miles away.  Okay.  What now?

Of course, there are healthy and unhealthy answers to that question.  But by simply asking, “What’s the next right thing to do?” you are transforming a bombshell into a building block for your future.

You may not have asked for that emotionally-charged explosion.  But you can still respond with grace, strength, and authority.  And speaking of authority, I can speak on God’s and tell you, what people or Satan means for evil, God means for good.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Martha Orlando November 27, 2012 at 2:59 pm

Seeing bombshells as opportunities to grow – just wow! Great advice, Andy, on how to cope with and get through the unexpected disasters in our lives. Sharing to Facebook!
Blessings to you!
Martha Orlando´s last blog post ..Are YOU in my PEW???

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