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How To Stop Running Away From Problems And Why We Do It

How To Stop Running Away From Problems And Why We Do It

We’ve all experienced it at some point. We worked really hard to accomplish something and we were full of determination, well, until it vanished and we started the race called running away from problems. 

Even though it was never our intention to bury that one specific problem under the carpet, we decided to do it because it was easier than dealing with it at that moment. 

While this might seem as a practical method, in reality, by doing that we are actually deceiving ourselves and making things worse.

Running away from our problems might reward us with short-term artificial happiness, but that’s all there is to it.

It’s one of the biggest delusions a lot of people deal with on a daily basis. Now, the question is: Why do we do it? 

Why are we running away from our problems when we know that eventually they will catch up with us and turn our life into, nothing more or less than, a living hell?

To that and many other questions (as well as solutions), you’ll find the answers below.

8 Ways To Stop Running Away From Your Problems And Deal With Them Instead

Pause and reflect

Instead of panicking about a certain problem or feeling overwhelmed by it, pause for a moment and reflect on it.

Think about all decisions that you’ve made, what you could’ve done to make things better and how you can improve them now.

At this initial phase, you need to understand what’s happening in order to be able to face the problem.

Also, when you pause and reflect, you won’t get tempted to run away from your problems instead of facing them.

You will be focused on things happening around you and how you feel about them, which leads to understanding a certain situation.

The only time we can deal with something is if we understand it completely. 

The math is simple here:

Pause & reflect = Understand = Face the problem.

Don’t blame other people or circumstances

When we’re feeling hopeless and helpless, we tend to blame other people or circumstances for the problem(s) we’re experiencing.

We mainly do it for the sake of justifying our decision to run away from our problems.

By blaming other people or circumstances, we’re telling the Universe that this is not our problem because someone else is to blame for it. Let me get one thing straight: No one is to blame for anything.

So, make sure you don’t blame anyone around you, the circumstances, or yourself because that’s a surefire way to become passive and avoid dealing with the problem. Instead, be realistic about it. 

Accept the problem as it is and put effort into making the best out of the situation. 

Embrace discomfort

One of the main reasons why we put our problems on hold is because we’re afraid to face and embrace discomfort. This always reminds me of the following lyrics by System Of A Down:

“‘Cause we are the ones that want to play

Always want to go

But you never want to stay

And we are the ones that want to choose

Always want to play

But you never want to lose…” (Aerials)

We can apply this analogy to almost anything in our lives and it sounds something like this: 

We want to lose weight, but we don’t want to break a sweat for a second or change our lifestyle.

We want a better job, but we don’t want to deal with the uncertainties and discomfort that come with finding a new one. 

We want to experience unconditional love, but we’re not ready to reciprocate, invest and make an effort. 

Instead of doing these things above, step outside of your comfort zone, embrace it and keep in mind that nothing good in life comes easy. 

You have to break a sweat, deal with uncertainties and make an effort if you want to learn to deal with your problems and evolve.

Avoid wallowing in self-pity

Remember that self-pity is one of the biggest time wasters. It will not fix your problems and it will not make you feel better. 

In a nutshell, it will not bring you anything good, but only prolong the suffering.

So, instead of wallowing in self-pity, focus on self-improvement. Experience life problems as an opportunity to grow instead of hide in fear. 

Let today be the last time that you run away from your problems because you know that you can do better than that!

Start working on finding solutions and develop a plan

After you have identified your problem, start working on finding solutions for it. If your problem is being overweight, then the logical solution would be to lose weight, right? Now, you have to develop a plan for it. 

You have the option to go for a walk, go for a run, hit the gym regularly, change your diet (eat healthier food) and probably there are some more options, but we won’t go that far.

After you’ve listed all your options, you have to make a schedule and stick to it!

When you have everything organized, there are fewer chances that you’ll run away from your new regimen.

Evaluate your progress at the end of the day and reward yourself accordingly for achieving your personal goals

(This method works for any problem you might have.)

Seek support

Don’t be afraid of seeking help and support from your loved ones, support groups, your family, close friends, a mental health professional and so on. 

Chances are that half of the people you know have gone through the same problem you’re going through now. 

And even if they haven’t, they can still enrich your perspective, give you helpful advice, suggest solutions and support you through the entire process of dealing with your problem. 

“If you’re out there and need help, please seek it. Be proud of your valiant day-to-day struggle. There is no shame in needing support.” Jared Padalecki

See also: Balancing These 10 Aspects Of Life Is The Key To True Happiness

Be persistent and patient

No matter the type of problem, method for solving it, and all the other factors, remember to always stay persistent and patient because that is the key to success. 

When you start dealing with your problems, you will probably go through lots of ups and downs, moments filled with a lack of motivation and similar and that’s completely normal. 

So, don’t let that discourage you from achieving your goals and instead use escapism as a form of coping mechanism. 

All those things are a part of the process that leads to success. 

Life doesn’t come with instructions, so we have to make mistakes and fall a few times in order to get up stronger, learn new things, and improve our strategy. 

All you need to do is believe that you can, do your best, be patient and you’ll already be halfway to solving your problem!

3 Most Common Reasons Why We’re Running Away From Problems

We’re afraid of dealing with the problems head-on

One of the biggest and most universally known reasons why we run away from our problems is because we’re afraid of dealing with them directly and openly. 

We tell ourselves things like: “Oh, there is plenty of time. I’ll deal with it tomorrow/next week/(next year?)”

We convince ourselves that dealing with the problem in front of us is not something that should be on our list of priorities at the moment because, as always, we have other “more important things” to do. 

Sometimes, those things really are more important, but this doesn’t mean that we should run away from problems or postpone them for an eternity. As always, organization is the key. 

But, unfortunately, we often forget that or we don’t want to remind ourselves of that, so we decide to leave those problems for better days, when dealing with them will be more convenient for us.

But, will those better days ever come? Hmm…

We’re afraid of the outcome

Whenever we find ourselves dealing with problems (especially if it is a big problem), the first thing that comes to mind is the following: What if I don’t succeed? What if I make things even worse than they were?

These and similar questions are what prevent us from continuing to deal with our problems because we become afraid of the potential outcome.

So, let’s say that you’re in college at the moment and you have a crucial exam in the near future.

The pressure to pass it is really high and you feel it with every fiber of your being.

What do you do? Do you start studying for the upcoming exam or you give up on everything out of fear that you will fail? 

Some people choose the first method (dealing with the problem), while others opt for the other one (running away from the problem) because they’re afraid of the outcome. 

Fear is one of the most powerful emotions in the universe that can force us to act in irresponsible and weird ways. 

Even though we’re aware of the fact that our actions cannot be justified, we still act that way because in our mind it was the right thing to do.

We’re afraid of losing something/someone

This one is especially true when it comes to running away from relationship problems. It’s when you’re perfectly aware of the fact that things have gone south and your relationship is no longer healthy.

You wish things were different or like they used to be before, but you don’t want to do anything about it. Why? Because you’re afraid of the entire process that might take a turn in the wrong direction. 

You want to avoid arguing, fights, having to constantly explain things, and similar because you think that by doing all this, things might escalate.

So, you choose to stay silent and passive for the time being (or forever?) because you don’t want to lose that person.

You don’t want to risk losing them because you think your life won’t be the same without them. And that might be true, but staying in an unhealthy relationship can ruin both partner’s mental health.

Again, fear can be so powerful to the extent it paralyzes us and influences the quality of our relationships and life in general.

7 Reasons Why We Shouldn’t Run Away From Problems

By running away from problems, you take a shortcut (or the easy way out)

I’ve never been a fan of taking shortcuts or easy ways out because I’ve realized that they DON’T teach you anything! And this can be applied to every aspect of our lives. 

Running away from your problems teaches you impatience and neglecting the importance of making an effort. There’s no chance that you’ll learn something new if you don’t face it or fight for it. 

The easy way out doesn’t teach you anything valuable and that’s why you should NEVER run away from your problems if you want to evolve as a person. 

Patience, effort, and perseverance are some of the most important things we learn throughout our life and they make us stronger and wiser.

Your problems still remain 

Many people think that if they decide to run away from their problems, those problems will vanish into thin air. But, just because you aren’t dealing with them actively, this doesn’t mean that they no longer exist.

The truth is, no matter how many times you run away from something, that one thing will still remain in your MIND. Because you cannot order your mind to stop thinking about it!

The things we run away from and all the unsaid words haunt us on a subconscious level which means we won’t even be aware of it. (But, our body and mind will be aware of it for sure.)

Oftentimes, people who are running away from their problems start experiencing mental and physical symptoms of their decision.

They might have difficulties falling asleep because their conscience is eating away at them, or they might develop panic attacks and similar.

The bottom line is that problems will still remain, just in another form that can be harmful for both your mind and body (until you decide to face the thing(s) you’ve run away from). 

You become afraid to connect and invest

When we’re running away from our problems, we start having a hard time investing and connecting with others.

Deep down in our heart we know that when/if a certain problem arises (be it in a relationship, or a friendship), we will run away.

When we know that we won’t stick around when things get tough, we become more cautious about establishing and maintaining connections. 

Let’s say that you’ve met a great guy/girl and everything is running smoothly, until one day something (and it can be just about anything) happens.

They might have problems with their mental health or family issues,which influences you as well because they expect you to support them.

Or your relationship might get stuck in a rut, which means you need to find a way to make things exciting again.

Now, if you’re a person who usually runs away from problems, that’s exactly what you’ll do in these situations as well. 

So, the next time you meet someone new, you will be afraid of connecting with them because you know that you might eventually run away again.

See also: 7 Signs You Have Philophobia – The Fear Of Falling In Love

Running away from your problems leads to running from yourself

Did you know that running away from problems actually means that you’re running away from yourself? Yup. And we all know that we can’t run away from ourselves no matter how hard we try.

Given that those problems are still stored in a special compartment of our brain, the only way to run away from them would be if we experienced amnesia (a form of memory loss) usually caused by brain damage.

Since the majority of us are not that lucky (sarcasm intended), we don’t have a choice but to keep carrying problems with us as we’re actively running from them.

Or better said, as we’re actively running from ourselves.

It’s a limbo that can only be escaped by deciding to face problems instead of playing hide and seek with them.

It makes you feel hopeless

The truth is, you can TRY to run away from problems, but you can’t run away from the feeling of hopelessness that comes with it. 

It’s when you’re alone and reflecting on everything that’s happened that you suddenly realize that you might have made a mistake by not facing that one problem.

It’s when you’re having difficulties falling asleep because you can’t stop thinking about that one thing you had to deal with, but for some reason you didn’t. 

Unsaid words and unfulfilled actions and desires are the demons that always haunt us at night. All these encounters make you feel hopeless because you can still feel the burden of your decision to run away.

You attract more problems into your life (and you keep running away from them as well)

Once you run away from your problems, this becomes your routine because one problem is connected with thousands of others. 

For example, you fail an exam that was crucial for you to finish college, find a job, move to another town and so on.

All these events are interconnected and they all depend on that one decision “to study for an exam or not”. 

You realize that things have gone south and whatever happens next, you’ll just avoid dealing with it as well. You end up in a loop that is far away from a happy place.

It is a race that you will never win

I’ve learned the hard way that running away from my problems is a race that I can never win. It is an ongoing problem that will keep creeping on you until you decide to face it. 

The moment you decide to run away from problems, you doom yourself because you know you’ll never win.

You can keep running for a long time but at some point, you will have to turn back to the place you left. 

So, why go through these hardships when you can cut to the chase by focusing on finding a solution for your particular problem(s)? Yes, that is the real question. 

25 Inspiring Quotes About Running Away From Problems

1. “I don’t run away from a challenge because I am afraid. Instead, I run toward it because the only way to escape fear is to trample it beneath your feet.” – Nadia Comaneci

2. “Going away won’t change anything if you’re running from yourself.” – Joyce Rachelle

3. “Wherever you go, there you are! You can’t run away from yourself, or the underlying situation, no matter where you go. You won’t find happiness anywhere, unless it’s already there in your heart, and therefore you have carried it with you.” – Andrew James Pritchard, Sukiyaki

4. “Running is the easiest solution to every problem. The capability of choosing this option on the basis of problem defines your personality.” – David Barik

5. “A lot of people think moving will solve their problems, when what they’re really doing is running away.” – Roxanne Snopek, The Chocolate Cure

6. “We feel that we can hide or run from problems, but we fail to understand that it isn’t the problem we hide or run from, but our capacity to handle that problem. Problems regularly attack due to our vulnerability to the problem; we often look at [the] situation giving us the stress & consider stress as the problem, but stress isn’t the problem, it’s our feeling or understanding of that situation which causes the stress.

We move away, try meditation, take medication & indulge in activities which rejuvenate the brain. Hence, the stress goes away. We continue with our lives and after a while the merry feeling goes away too, and we start getting stressed again.

Problems are most vulnerable when it’s in the seed stage, but we water them with our ignorance or lack of attention and one day they become bigger than our expectation & imagination. We can still fight it, but we underestimate our capabilities & keep running away, that process gives it more nutrition to grow even bigger, and since we run away without solving them, they keep following us in new disguises; finally, one day we run out of places to run to and are left with stress, depression, and anxiety.” – Shahenshah Hafeez Khan

7. “Acceptance of one’s life has nothing to do with resignation; it does not mean running away from the struggle. On the contrary, it means accepting it as it comes, with all the handicaps of heredity, of suffering, of psychological complexes and injustices.” – Paul Tournier

8. “What is needed, rather than running away or controlling or suppressing or any other resistance, is understanding fear; that means, watch it, learn about it, come directly into contact with it. We are to learn about fear, not how to escape from it.” – Jiddu Krishnamurti

9. “You can always improve your situation. But you do so by facing it, not by running away.” – Brad Warner

10. “Courage is a terribly important value. It means you don’t run away when things are tough. It means you don’t turn away from a friend when he or she is in trouble. It means standing up against the majority opinion… There’s a lot of people who won’t wear it on their sleeve, or display it through some heroic act. But courage is having the strength to do what’s honorable and decent.” – George H. W. Bush

11. “Stop leaving and you will arrive, stop searching and you will see, stop running away and you will be found.” – Laozi

12. “You can’t run away from yourself.” – Bob Marley

13. “To remain stable is to refrain from trying to separate yourself from a pain because you know that you cannot. Running away from fear is fear, fighting pain is pain, trying to be brave is being scared. If the mind is in pain, the mind is pain. The thinker has no other form than his thought. There is no escape.” – Alan Watts

14. “Running away will never make you free.” – Kenny Loggins

15. “You can run but you can’t hide.” – Emily Giffin

16. “Danger – if you meet it promptly and without flinching – you will reduce the danger by half. Never run away from anything. Never!” – Winston Churchill

17. “Running away from things you find unpleasant causes suffering. But facing and challenging such situations will enrich your life.” – Senora Roy

18. “Running away from the problem only increases the distance from the solution.” – Nishan Panwar

19. “Running away was easy; not knowing what to do next was the hard part.” – Glenda Millard

20. “We acquire the strength we have overcome.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

21. “Nothing ever goes away until it teaches us what we need to know.” – Pema Chodron

22. “We run away all the time to avoid coming face to face with ourselves.” – Unknown

23. “Acceptance of one’s life has nothing to do with resignation; it does not mean running away from the struggle. On the contrary, it means accepting it as it comes, with all the handicaps of heredity, of suffering, of psychological complexes and injustices.” – Dr. Paul Tournier

24. “When someone is trying very hard to get something, they don’t. And when they’re running away from something as hard as they can, it usually catches up with them.” – Haruki Murakami

25. “Trying to run away is never the answer to being a fully human. Running away from the immediacy of our experience is like preferring death to life.” – Pema Chodron

The Only Way To Solve A Problem Is To Face It!

Running away from problems is like entering a dead-end street.

You can hide there for awhile and think that you’ve managed to run away from your problems, but eventually you will have to go back and face them.

Dealing with problems instead of running away from them is the only way to becoming at peace with yourself and living a happy life.

Staying persistent and never giving up until you find a solution makes you stronger and wiser!

These are the qualities that you should nourish because they will help you reach your full potential and become the best version of yourself.

See also: 8 Long-Distance Relationship Problems (And How To Make It Work)