Yesterday I went for my usual run, in my usual trail, only to realize the trail was blocked due to constructions work.
My first instinct was to head back home and do some bands and free weights workout.
I know what I sound like.
But that’s the truth
Then I looked my sneakers in the eye(s) and said :”no. friggin. way.”
Road construction will not make me give up my morning run.
So I changed my route, and started running into the wheat fields that surround the small village I live in.
*Just in case you get all excited and think I am living the dream, do remember what John Lennon said: “beware of making your dreams come true”.
You can read here why : How I stopped complaining.
I ended up running for almost an hour, and enjoying every minute of it.
So I learned a valuable lesson from that road construction incident.
Whenever something bad happens, instead of fretting about it, I can tell myself “this is for the best, now I can do that other thing I wanted to do!”
This is a mechanism my brain developed, once it finally realized I have no ability to deal with the actual implications of bad things happening to me -or to my family.
I simply tell myself a different story from the original written story my perception organized for me.
The same objective situation can extract two (even three) different stories I tell myself- depending on the mood I’m in, and as a direct result- a different approach I’ll take- and different ending to the story.
For many years I believed my actions were the key to my happiness- but I ignored the power of my own story telling – which can turn a miserable situation into a success story- and vice versa.
I can tell you that once I realized I have no patience for work colleagues, every meeting gave me scratches and people’s attitude towards the cases they needed to handle was becoming an imminent danger to the walls of my office (yes, possible head clashing with said walls), I realized I will not climb up the office ladder.
As every management course teaches us- pleasant people climb up the office ladder faster than efficient hard working (thus bitter) workers.
To say that I wasn’t pleasant would be the understatement of the universe.
At that point there were 2 stories I could tell myself:
#1: “this is unfair! all the hard work I put and the system won’t change! people need to learn how to work! blah blah yada yada!!”
#2: “this is such a good opportunity to pack my plants and my fish tank and skedaddle. thank myself for almost 30 years of perseverance and early retirement plans and pension plans , and most importantly thank myself for learning to become frugal and live on a budget”.
contemplating the 2 possible stories, I think you can see why I chose to tell myself the latter,
I promised myself when I reached 50 that I will not spend my life being spiteful and bitter. (haven’t fully succeeded yet. working progress).
People from work who try to call me and start a conversation about dirty office politics get a cold shoulder, and I still can’t stand it- I block their number.
The pool is closed due to something? I’ll go running.
The online supermarket delivered only one (1) eggplant instead of a kilo? I’ll make tomato sauce from ripe tomatoes , garlic and diced onions, add paprika, pepper and cumin, let simmer and add diced one (1) eggplant to the sauce, let simmer for 45 minutes -even more if needed, and add to stuffed bell peppers , or whatever. the new story? oh great! one eggplant! I’ve been wanting to try tomato sauce -eggplant forever!
Be creative. your wellbeing can thrive on a good story.
Enjoy- the cooliflower.