I know this isn’t a mind blowing concept, that one does not equal everything. It is simple math but then why do people get so bent out of shape if one thing does not go the way they think it should? I get it when a five year old has a meltdown, but by the time you are adult, you should be able to reason out that if everything was sunshine and rainbows, it would take away from the appreciation of sunshine and rainbows, don’t you think?
I have had the pleasure of hearing people wail that “He ruined my life by acting that way.” “They should have known I wanted that….” “This always happens to me.” “It’s not fair.” My personal favorite….”It kills me when…..” No, no it doesn’t but one might want to be mindful of the language they use.
I have compassion for the way people are feeling but a lessening tolerance for the drama they bring on themselves. I get that if there is a practiced way of being, it may take a bit to shift that perspective, but wouldn’t you want to feel empowered and inspired rather than exhausted and put upon? Some may not even realize they are doing this to themselves as it has become such a habit, they can’t see another way until it is pointed out, hopefully nicely.
A few Thanksgiving’s ago I was planning to run a race in Connecticut. Well, Mother Nature had other ideas and decided to dump our first real snowfall on Pittsfield. Now, I love a good challenge but let’s just say ice and Vicki do NOT have a good history and I know when to choose balance over ego. Did I want to move up from 5k, 3.1 miles, to this weird mileage of 4.768? Of course, but what I wasn’t interested in was the hour long drive in a winter weather advisory to run in slush and ice the week after bronchitis. A friend said “you must be so disappointed.” I thought a moment and said, “I must?” Like it was a forgone conclusion if plans didn’t go the way they were originally stated, I have to be disappointed. It had to ruin my holiday. It meant I could never run another 4.768 race again ever (insert hand to the back of my forehead in just a bit of theatrical drama here) and my record is tarnished! Nope, it means I get to stay home, get some blogs written, maybe snuggle in and watch a movie and eat pizza on Thanksgiving! One change in plans does not mean my life is over, it doesn’t even mean my Thursday is over, it simply means what it is; a change in plans.
I believe in an effort to feel self value we have poured power into every small event in this lifetime to be big and in that process have lost our ability to adapt. It is stressing out our kids and it is creating a pressure that can not be maintained. Ironically, this has not brought more to our lives, it has diminished the sweetness of a snow day, of a flower, of an opportunity to practice shifting and realizing that events are not who we are, they are markers of our time here.
Do you do this to yourself? Do you wind yourself up in turmoil when something changes or when it doesn’t go as you created the movie in your head for it to go? We all have that potential, that is what makes being human so fun, we are creative. Could you give yourself a little forgiveness around the idea of how something is supposed to turn out and a little permission to enjoy it however it unfolds? It will take a bit of consciousness to be able to have this on demand, but it is worth the investment. YOU are worth the investment.
As for my Thanksgiving race, well, I still did it. I did it on my treadmill and ran it at the same time the race was happening. I enjoyed my first ever two mile consecutive run, walk, then two miles more. This was the gift in the change of schedule because I know with thousands of people around me I would not have concentrated enough to give myself permission to slow down and go for distance rather than time. THAT is the gift, commitment to feeling good with myself.
So embrace when something doesn’t go as you saw it should. Plot changes are fun if you don’t take it personally and see it for what it is, an opportunity to see how accepting you are the equation of life and that one thing can not make or break your experience but roll them all together and you have a feast bigger than any Thanksgiving every held. How fun is that?