Managing the Crash

Screech! Smack! Crumble….

Ever have one of those days that starts out as a car wreck and keeps on getting worse? It gets to a point where you ask yourself: “Oh, what now? Why not? I can’t handle it.”

I admit to the fact that I prefer balance, predictability, and order in my life. Who doesn’t? But I guess it is how you handle the car wreck that helps you understand that life will never be any of these things. It wouldn’t be a meal if all you ate was boring white bread, would it? Life is the spice. It’s texture and fiber. It comes in all shapes, colors and sizes. Some days are better than others.

This week I am thinking of lives that are lost too early, houses that burn down in windswept areas in California, jobs that seemed a sure thing but don’t materialize, marriages that seem unbreakable yet are smashed to smithereens. We all have those calamities. They help to shape us into resilient human beings. You always hear about people saying they would never have traded the hardship because it made them who they are today..

But honestly, it stinks when the free fall is happening. Where will we land when the bottom drops out?

There are some simple steps that I take to rationalize myself back into balance:

1. I am still here and able to get back up.

2. What could I possibly do in the future to avoid this pitfall?

3. Who can I talk to while I am in the doldrums?

(I learned the hard way, make sure this person wants to listen…and talk to many others besides this one friend.)

4. Understand that life is never within your control. Figure out how to “roll with the punches”.

5. Develop a strategy to talk yourself back into functioning: a) First….b) Next…c) Then d) Finally

Let’s face it, life is going to suck sometimes. But it isn’t life really, that sucks, it is in how you manage your trials. It is all in the navigation.

Believe me, I do not have the overflowing cup of happiness. I have had my share of bumps and bruises along the way. I like to turn to my faith and have developed a routine of daily affirmation. In good times and bad I have learned that sometimes, there will be only one cheerleader for your team…you.

So, have your rainy day gear ready, know where that spare tire is, prepare for unexpected things, but don’t give up on living the life you were given.

Get back up. Take smaller bites. Celebrate the little things.

Thanks for listening.

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