· Medication relief
· Fixing the external situation or problem often through some new technology
· Distraction from the problem and one’s reaction to it
· Reassurance that bad events won’t occur
Life is often hard and disappointing let us just face this fact. Medications are fine if you can find one that has few side effects and whose impact is enduring. Fixing the external situation or problem is ideal but sadly this solution often takes lots of time, is very expensive, does not work quite as promised or is elusive. Distracting yourself from your problem might be okay too for a period of time. Watch television, listen to music, pray, read or exercise. Some distractions are healthier than others so pursue things like music, reading and exercise. Reassurance is fine if it can be done. Reassurance is best when it is not false reassurance but based on probabilistic information that is reliable and valid. Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy (REBT) has no problem with these approaches to problems but in the end reality too often turns grim. People get sick again, we try a new solution and fail yet again, a new recession hits and we are laid off again, we grow old get new illnesses and face the possibility of death.
This is when REBT shines and puts forth a difficult to implement solution that many people sadly reject. This solution is tolerance and acceptance of what cannot be changed. Tolerance and acceptance are enduring. People all too often do not opt for this philosophical solution. People retort that acceptance and tolerance of unchangeable circumstances is too hard and unrealistic. It is an unacceptable answer. It can’t be implemented because “things should be different.” REBT holds firm to the philosophical line and says you might think things should be different but reality is dictating otherwise. See this simple, sad, and grim fact. The grim situation which you have tried to medicate, technologically fix, distract yourself from and reassure yourself about continues to exist. Your preferred solutions are not working. What REBT advocates, philosophical acceptance, is hard but it is possible. It can withstand grim reality when fallible humans think with their heads and use their brains. What are you waiting for?