Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Don't Cry Over...

This morning, I spilled milk. I was pouring milk into my cereal bowl and I missed, and the milk went all over my hardwood kitchen floors. I heard the phrase "don't cry over spilled milk" echoing in my head, and therefore I stayed calm and mopped it up before rushing to work.

A few readers have written in to ask which techniques are useful in staying calm in ordinary annoying situations, ie. car runs low on gas when you're in a rush somewhere, garbage bag breaks and trash spills out on your living room floor, your babysitter doesn't show up on time and you might be late for work, etc...

I have sometimes fallen into the trap of letting the unexpected happenings of everyday life frustrate me, and have come up with the following list of strategies to alleviate the stress of annoying situations:

1. Keep in mind that most of life we have little control over. Whether you think of it as God, fate, destiny, or luck...most of the occurrences we face in our life are beyond our control. Annoyances and unplanned events are a given - so why spend so much time upset over something you can't avoid?

2. When confronting a situation that makes you want to scream inside, even for a brief second - remember that it will be easier to get through it, the calmer you are. Young children often cry and scream when something doesn't go there way, because they have yet to learn that the time and energy they spent in a tantrum could have been used to rectify the situation. Although, expressing emotion is often a healthy action, it is not necessarily always productive.

3. Some people get upset and can't get themselves out of a funk for the rest of the day. Learn to recognize when something goes wrong, and do not dwell in your state of disappointment.

People who can bring themselves up out of unexpected and disappointing situations and bounce back quickly are the ones who succeed most in the world. Not only should you not cry over spilled milk, but you should clean it up quickly and move on with your life...

No comments:

Post a Comment