I have to admit it. My husband, Jim, is the smartest person I know.
We’ve been married since 1988 and together since 1983. He’s always been there. My rock. The guy who puts up with me and my crazy ideas. Although he still cringes when he hears the words, “I’ve been thinking”, he listens and let’s me run with whatever I come up with. We both share a passion for helping others and our community; hence the www.timetoplay.com project with the vision of people helping people and the mission to bring ideas to us “worker bees” to help make our lives better.
Unfortunately, we encounter so many things in one given day that we can become frustrated and lose site of what’s important and, sometimes, our ability to handle things we encounter. Our lives are those of multitaskers, and while some of us are proud of the crazy quantity of stuff we can achieve in one day, I think it only increases our anxiety. Many of us put a lot of self-inflicted pressure on ourselves. We get tired.
Things that occur during the day can also create negative vibes for us and can shift us into being crabby or in a bad mood. For example, my daughter was astonished at a person’s behavior yesterday. She was volunteering at a charitable event and an attendee was absolutely rude to her. I told her that there may have been a reason behind the woman’s behavior — you know, sometimes a reaction is because of something else that was encountered prior to the event. I told her to let it go — it’s important because we don’t know the circumstances and the agitation is not necessarily against us – especially when you only encounter a person and they don’t even know you. This person might have had an argument with prior to communicating with her, she may have had a hard day, someone in her family may have been giving her a hard time (it was a family event and sometimes these are trying when you have small children with you, and sometimes that, in itself is trying). And, while it’s not o.k. to make excuses for someone else, it’s better then being caught up in their bad mood. It has taken me a long time to realize this, and I have to catch myself from getting caught up in the moment (which does not always happen). When you become frustrated, things can trigger you and only amplify your behavior (and you freak out a little). I’m still working on realizing the triggers which push me towards a behavior I do not prefer, and sometimes it’s not until after the event that I realize what happened and, maybe, that I did not handle something the way I should have. But, each day is a learning experience. We learn so we can grow and change what we need to so we can have a better life.
And, many of us (me, me!) are totally inpatient. Being inpatient, a hard day at work, or something else that we encounter during the day of high pressure that we inflict on ourselves really can wear us down. I know, personally, that I expect too much from myself.
We are, after all, human. I learn this from Jim.
After becoming exhausted, after having temper tantrums (admit it — we all do it sometimes!), he brings me back to reality. “It’s not a problem, it’s an inconvenience”, he said recently. Wow! A light bulb went off and started me thinking! Jim is a retired police officer. He went on to explain that the only problem is when you have bullets flying by your head. Good point.
I’ve always been a complainer. After reading many self-help books over these past 2 years, I now understand that complaining brings negative energy to a person. I wish I knew that sooner. I grew up in a family of complainers, so complaining is second nature to me. In the mornings I’d usually list what the problems of the day were. I always started it with “the only problem is_____” for my day — whether it was needing to get gas, trying to figure out how to fit things into the day time-wise, or making any statement. Pretty much, something was always a problem.
One morning a few days ago, in response to my problem list, Jim gave me an example. He explained that running out of coffee beans is not a problem, only an inconvenience. “You can always just go to the deli and get a cup”, he said. The light bulb again — there’s always a plan “B”. I get it. It makes sense!
OK, so I’m a little disappointed it took him 29 years to verbalize these amazing words of wisdom, but grateful he did. “___________ is a problem” is no longer a normal daily statement that I make.
My mind triggers now if the bad 7 letter word (problem) comes out of my mouth and I immediately shift my thinking. Realistically, nothing is a problem what a person can’t tackle by looking at it objectively, not just reacting. When we just react it’s harder to find a rational solution to whatever the issue is. And, I know that there is a solution to any problem if we just take a step back and figure out what to do next. Although, after Jim’s words of enlightenment, nothing is really a problem, is it?
We make our own problems and worry. I’m working so hard on stopping myself when I get into a cycle of down. When you stop yourself and look objectively at something, things seem to work out. And it makes for such a nicer day.
Hope your inconveniences are very minor and easy ones to solve. There is a solution to any inconvenience.
# # #