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My answer to the question, “When is it not okay to be not okay?”

My answer to the question, “When is it not okay to be not okay?”

Many have watched the 2020 Korean drama It’s Okay Not To Be Okay. It stars one of the highest-paid Korean actors Kim Soo Hyun and actress Seo Ye Ji. The drama tackles mental issues, personal problems, and how different individuals deal with them. The series ultimately showcase that sometimes it’s okay not to be okay. During the Binibining Pilipinas coronation night, one of the judges, acclaimed television show host, and author Boy Abunda, “Ngayon madalas nating naririnig, [We hear it often now] it’s okay to not be okay. My question is, when is it okay not to be okay? And when is it not okay to be not okay?

When it is okay not to be okay and when is it not okay to be not okay?”
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My answer to the question, “When is it not okay to be not okay?”

Many netizens posted their own answers on social media. Then, an episode of memes was born. Some also said that Boy Abunda’s question was one of the hardest to answer. Meanwhile, the second part of the question had troubled me. Is there actually a time that it’s not okay to be not okay?

Then, I started to remember the times I found myself not being okay. At the time, I realized how selfish it was of me to tell myself I am not okay when there are people suffering more difficult situations than mine.

[EDITOR’S NOTE: Hello, Angela here! Let me just say that another person having a much more difficult life than you does not invalidate your own hardships. It’s not being “selfish.” A lot of people suffer in their own way but that does not mean you’re not allowed to have your own struggles.]

phrase that feels not okay

When people tell me “You can do it! I believe in you,” it makes me anxious.

I don’t accept these phrases as a sign of good luck. I consider it a piece of bad luck. Because, then, that will just lead me into disappointing them. Whenever I hear or read these messages, it just doesn’t make me feel good. It puts pressure on my shoulders. Little by little, I am accepting the fact that it’s just what people are used to saying. I had started to advise myself not to feel offended whenever I do hear or read them. They just wanted to support me. They just wanted to boost my confidence even if it feels like the other way around for me.

Another situation where I felt that anxious is when someone does not appreciate my work or the effort I exerted.  

I mean, who would not be? However, it feels inappropriate to see things in this kind of situation. Maybe they appreciated it, showed it the way they could, and I just didn’t see it? Or, maybe my efforts just ended up not being that good. I advise myself to not feel sad and that I’d do better next time. Or, maybe I should just exert effort on those people who actually appreciate what I do for them?

Overthinking and jumping to conclusions will not bring any good. 

A lot of possibilities have happened in this scenario.  It will probably just destroy something precious to you – or maybe even yourself. Even when that’s the case, there’s still one thought that sticks out: I feel bad when I am not able to get what I want.

I get mood swings and even simple things could annoy me. It sounds immature but it naturally happens to a lot of people. The only moment that it doesn’t come naturally is when you have to swallow that feeling and end up doing bad things to people around you, to people you love. So, think about the good things that could happen when you couldn’t get what you want. What if a better opportunity comes along and in exchange, a better chance to that thing you could not have?

Failing. We all hate that. Then, when someone asks, “Are you okay?” You want to snap and say, “Do I look okay to you?”

Again, a natural scenario. However, keeping that unnecessarily negative attitude for a long time is plain wrong. Doing nothing and giving up after that disappointment is certainly not okay.

Just like what BTS said in their song Life Goes On, do not be stuck on that destructive feeling. Try again and there will be a time that your light will shine the brightest. You just need to be at the right place and at the right time. 

Overall, I consider my own issues the reason for feeling awful or “not okay.” It is okay not to be okay. But, it’s not okay not to be okay when it has become your choice to stay that way. Limiting yourself to discover more good things in this world is not okay. You can feel and for now, but you have to stand up and fight because life goes on. 

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