One of my best go-to survival skills, second only to a good, slightly wacky sense of humor, is the question, “What’s the worst that could happen?”
I do this particularly when an idea gives me pause, scares me a bit, or a lot. It’s a healthy change of perspective that helps me assess more rationally, rather than solely on emotion.
I change my perspective, weighing possible paths, I then come up with what I think is the best course of action. Then I ask, “What’s the worst thing that could happen?” If I can handle that worst outcome, I give myself the green light. Works for me. What is a go-to survival skill for you?
My husband and I will be getting serious about our diet again on Thursday. Why Thursday, you ask? I have trouble eating right when my husband is not on board – at least with the main thrust of it. I can handle his sneaking ‘goodies’ into the shopping cart that only he will eat, but if he’s not on board with the main program, it’s a waste of time and only results in frustration and arguments. Life is too short for that. HE has decided that Thursday is the day, so I’m gearing up for that.
We’re enjoying a ‘last hurrah’ by eating some of the wonderful things we received at Christmas. We have bought other things, and have been enjoying sandwiches and other things in the bread family, plus a bit from the greasy/salty food group, plus some truly ‘awful’ things from the sugar ball food group. All this ends Thursday morning. We have agreed.
We have given away a huge bunch of stuff. We will put other things in the trash for pickup today. We will thoroughly enjoy eating our way through more today and tomorrow. We will buy good, healthy things needed for Thursday and beyond, and I will plan some healthy snacks.
OUR ‘New Year’ will begin Thursday morning, and hopefully, by the end of this month we will have made some good progress. I have re-started my yoga practice, and will do a session on my elliptical trainer in the garage on Thursday morning. I have my gold stars ready for my desk calendar – one for yoga, one for elliptical, and another for steps.
If YOU are also trying to get healthier in 2021, let’s encourage each other.
I am trying to look at things as ‘the-glass-is-half-full’ these days. (Sometimes the glass tips over, spills the contents, and then shatters on the floor, though.) I do believe that you can control your attitude about what is happening to and around you, putting the best face on it that you can, and then powering on.
Each person’s problems are different. The priority of dealing with them depends on how much they are affecting your life. Some vary in their intensity, allowing you to put some on the back burner to be dealt with some nebulous time in the future. Others are chronic, requiring that you either decide to essentially ignore them, or work steadily, day by day, on solutions. Still others require immediate action by you or help from others.
There are times problems are overwhelming. A quote by Brian Tracy is magnetically stuck to the side of a file cabinet by my computer. It says, “When you feel overwhelmed with too much to do and too little time, remind yourself that all you can do is all you can do.”
( I also include problems that are ‘overwhelming’ because they seem too large, too defeating for you to handle for some reason.) I am learning to handle these ‘one-bite-at-a-time,’ breaking the problem down into several steps or deciding to only handle one day at a time, dealing with things the best I can.
I am trying to learn to give myself a break, as well as give the same consideration to others who are ALSO dealing with problems. Certain words spring to mind – becoming more and more important the longer I live: listening; empathy; compassion; kindness. Some of my to-do lists are a compilation of ‘things-I-CAN-control’ offsetting all the things I CAN’T.
It’s more than being a ‘glass-half-full/glass-half-empty’ thing. Perspective is also a product of your circumstance, your condition, your support systems.
We all deal with life challenges differently, and we are ALL trying to handle LOTS of character-building things right now – whether it’s the virus, life-turned-upside-down, fear for the future, loss of job, loss of loved ones, Mother Nature’s fury, lost opportunities, and more.
Looking for ways to stay CALM while doing the best possible otherwise is becoming more and more important to me.
Realizing and accepting what I CAN – and CAN’T do anything about is a first step.
Doing what you CAN – step by step – “All you can do is all you can do.” Try to stop worrying.
Stay busy. Try to be as productive as possible. Make a list and check things off. (I try to do at least one big project each day.)
Take care of yourself by eating healthy and exercising. (Trying to get my lard off makes me feel I’m in control of at least ONE thing.)
Try to arrange for happy things during the day. (Mine are reading, art room, writing on my blog, finding pictures for the blog, working in my garden, listening to music, talking to friends.
Take advantage of your personal support group. (Having someone who cares and listens, letting you vent without verbal judgment, is a life saver. Remember that this goes both ways!)
Many times – particularly lately – I’ve been frustrated, angry, and afraid that I cannot control much of what is going on in my life. I have wasted time fussing at people, railing at the world in general, and doing a bit of escaping. I want to be able to control things. I want to be able to wave my magic wand and FIX the people and animals I love. I want to wave it again to solve the awful problems in the world today. Despite my fussing, railing, escaping – despite my wants, desires, and wand-waving, things are the same as they were.
I am now trying
to get calm and try to remain that way
to do all I am able to do to make things better
to live one day at a time – trying to make each one count.
to accept what I cannot change and deal with each thing the best I can
to stay as healthy as I can by staying serious about my keto eating plan and exercise
to keep finding healthy ways to give myself a break, whether it’s playing in my art room, working in my flowers or veggie garden, reading, listening to music, etc.
“Sometimes you need to look at life from a different perspective.” ~ Inas Chahboun
In these days of worry over COVID 19, my perspective continues to change.
My priorities have changed, and continue to change. Things that used to bother me don’t even register now.
It’s raining again, so I’m thankful we have a warm, dry home.
I’m reaching out to friends and family to make sure they are safe, catch up with what is going on, and share the love.
One of the priorities for the day was finding something I can wear over my face in the few times we go out in public.
We’re not planning to go out until we need to, but we now have a group of painting masks to take with us and wear. I’m not sure my husband will use one. (He continues to be his stubborn self – crisis or no crisis.)
I am hoping I can visit my veggies this afternoon. I would like to do another harvest. If I do, I’ll take some pics to share.
I watch our animals – seeing that nothing has changed for them. They continue to live their lives, not only enjoying one day at a time, but one moment at a time. I am trying to learn from this.
My biggest wish right now is that people will soon be able to go back to work soon. I am hoping that this will devolve into a more ‘regular’ flu worry, where we can get a shot for the ‘season,’ and just be normally careful. Our country needs to get back to normal as soon as possible.
I’m getting a really late start again today because our Internet service is super wonky again today. I’m looking at this problem as another of life’s character-building exercises. I get halfway through a post, email, or reading an article, and everything goes dead. The sun is shining. This seems to be a case of being attacked by gremlins.
It occurs to me that when you retire, many things get turned upside-down.
One big example is a change in perspective – how we feel about Mondays.
We have worked most of our lives. Mondays were something that happened with great regularity – like clockwork – and meant an end to most free time and lots of hard work for the coming week. We lived for the weekends, getting to sleep in (until we had kids) and then rushing around to get all the errands done while the stores were open that we couldn’t make time for during the week. We made a point of playing hard, wringing every ounce of fun out of our time off, only to return to yet another Monday. The week would C-R-A-W-L past (even though I liked most of my jobs a lot).
Since we retired, we have the opposite situation. We like to have all the stores open, deliveries being made, mail being delivered, banks open, etc. We stay super busy, not able to figure out how we EVER found time to work full time. Our lives are full of interesting and fun things to do. Many of these things come to a screeching halt when it’s the weekend or a holiday. We start to do something and the bank is closed, or the stores are closed, or….
I’m not REALLY complaining. I’m just trying to explain the change in perspective now that we’re as old as dirt. :0)