Here I am highly caffeinated— in a mild, lukewarm panic sitting in a somewhat secluded corner of Starbucks.
Lacing the final touches on a draft I’ve been meaning to finish for weeks. A post I finally felt proud of. A post that truly captured the passion I felt for a particular topic, and then it happened…
The damage was down and out. An unknowingly highlighted, significant portion of the post vanished when I hit the space bar and there it was (or wasn’t); I had erased majority of what I just finished. I felt frantic and was without a doubt unprepared and caught off guard by this technological mishap. (Side note: I just learned how to undo something like this if it ever happens again. Shouts to the homie, Google.)
In a situation like this, I would’ve shoved my face so far into one of many Febreze scented pillows that are comfortably housed on my living room couch. Followed by a disturbingly long “uuuuuuuuuuuuuggggghhhhhhhhhhhhhhh”. Followed by cursing in multiple languages. Followed by a mellow dramatic gaze at the ceiling. Followed by a slightly teary eyed gaze at my laptop screen.
Well.. I was in public.
I couldn’t do any of those things without disrupting a mother and child sitting next to me as they enjoyed a slice of cinnamon streusel cake and a diverting conversation about why he’s not allowed to watch Spongebob even though his cousin is allowed to.
I couldn’t help but listen for my bullshit Beats by Dre headphones wouldn’t cooperate with my laptop’s bluetooth setting. (I still adore my Beats by Dre headphones. They actually rock even if they don’t always cooperate.)
Instead of wildin’ out in public, I mouth “are you effing kidding me” at the keyboard that had just betrayed me.
I haven’t published a post in months and I finally got around to revising and editing one that I felt eager and enthusiastic about but the universe wasn’t having it. The cosmos were telling me to take a seat.
I can do one of two things:
1). Feel sorry for myself as I continue to pout about the has-beens of my long lost blog post, sink into my chair and say “to hell with it”, and grab a beer from the barista because Starbucks does that now. They sell alcoholic beverages and I will most definitely cheers to that.
2). Or, I can go with the flow of an adverse situation and come up with something new. So.. let’s start something new. And proceed to grab a beer because do I really need a viable excuse for an ice cold brew? Mmm nope.
Let’s be real.. I know, you know, we all know— my disappearing post truly isn’t something to sweat when put into perspective. I could go ahead and list one too many setbacks that could hypothetically be worse. We all have imaginations here and are thoroughly capable of envisioning real-life situations that could otherwise leave us on the floor, curled up, and figuratively stomped on— so I’ll leave that list in the trash.
Maybe I should talk about seeing past a situation..
What I won’t do on the other hand is sit here and enthusiastically type about how every pile of shit waiting to be stepped on has rainbows and butterflies living inside.
Nope, not going there.
The abrasive plot-twist’s of life will inevitably throw you off your smooth sailing rocker— but the moment you place extraneous emphasis on minor mishaps, choose to dwell in them, over-think them, and question the alternative ways they could’ve played out will ruin you. Especially if you make a habit of it.
Constructively practice the mantra of “not sweating the small things.” Train your emotional response system and way of thinking by sifting through situations and asking yourself “In the grand scheme of things, how detrimental is this really?”
When life walks behind you with a shit-eating grin, waiting to trip you from behind in a hallway filled with ego and expectation, it’s sometimes easier to fall on the floor and say “Why me? Why is life flipping me, of all people, the bird?”
This is where I ask that you force yourself past this jaded mindset of “why me.” Making space for this “why me” attitude will hold you captive. I’m speaking from first hand experience here. I was the self proclaimed queen of “why me.” It was the easiest most mediocre way of thinking for me to fall on when I felt like I couldn’t win a battle. When I felt like the fight wasn’t worth it. When I felt like I didn’t have the energy to realize that whatever had just happened isn’t all that bad when put into perspective.
I was a jailed by the “why me” rhetoric until I started asking myself “why not me?” I’m not all that special. How could I possibly feel I was capable of dodging the potholes of life when my foot, along with every other foot, fits right in.
Believe it or not, I’m not actually here to tell you that life sucks, you suck, and shit happens. That’s just a small portion of it. A small piece of the cookie.
In retrospective this is the part where I preach advice we’ve heard time and time again: LET THE PETTY THINGS GO. DO NOT SWEAT THEM. Let them fly away, let them twirl in the wind, and let them get eaten by a hawk. Meaningless blunder doesn’t need to be added to the primarily prosperous coffee cup of life.
Save the tenacious effort and contemplative strategy for the inevitably abrupt curveballs of life. Batter up my friend, batter up.
We inescapably come toe-to-toe with various situations that demand a stormy battle; you know it when you see it and you’re prepared to suit up. We then have situations comparatively irrelevant and pretty damn foolish, resulting in weighted baggage asking to be dropped into a pile of “no good, nothing, not taking you home with me today, Pauly.”
You have bigger fish to fry.
And when those heavier, unseasoned, tasteless fish fillets are begging to be fried— focus fully on the parts of the situation you have control over. Focusing largely on what is out of your power will keep you blinded from how to control and maneuver the aspects that are in your power.
A dreadful scenario comes knocking on your door, right? Lets itself in, leaves the lights on, robs you of your sleep, and then has the audacity to leave an empty box of Fruity Pebbles in the pantry after finishing them off. That’s when your problem solving blueprint is revving its engine, begging for you to say “it’s go time.” It’s time to solve it, get passed it, or make it better.
Cry it out, box it out, laugh it out, and truly feel it. To let go of unwanted emotion you have to feel it fully. Allow yourself to feel the anguish because the things we go through sometimes will attempt to hijack your soul and it sucks. It happens to you, it happens to me, it happens to just about every living being on this planet. You might feel the “why me” and succumb to the unwelcome stress, lack of motivation, unruly thoughts, and the desire to not deal with the overstepping truths of reality.
There’s usually a healthy way and an unfitting, destructible way to get past things and sometimes there’s a mix of the two. It’s up to you and your efforts to shape the momentum that will help you progress— not regress, forfeit, and bow down to the trauma of a bad bodied situation leaving you with a shipwrecked aftermath.
Save your energy for when it is needed most. Life’s battles, struggles, and confusions will demand the use of your cooped up strength, sanity, and wisdom for when it truly matters.
Don’t tread small waters, for when you find yourself in viscous depths, you will not have prepped yourself for a forthright nosedive headed straight towards defeat. You will backhand that bad bodied situation right in the mouth and tell it to be gone.