During one of my early morning bike rides, a woman pulled over across the street and beckoned me. “Have you seen a French bulldog?” she yelled, her eyes teary. “He’s missing.”
I couldn’t help her, and as she drove away, I pictured everyone in her household anxiously searching for the missing dog. For this woman and her family, this was a terrible day. It was also a terrible day for those who were mourning the loss of a friend or relative. Then I pictured couples who were preparing to be married that same day, or the people welcoming new babies into the world. For them, this was a joyful day to be remembered and celebrated for years to come.
What was the true nature of this day? Was it terrible or joyful?
Neither. The day just “was.”
The events I mentioned were not sources of anguish or happiness. The source of the negative or positive emotions was what people thought about what occurred in their lives. If the actual events could cause emotions, I would’ve been as distressed as the woman who had lost the French bulldog, and as ecstatic as the brides ready to walk down the aisle.
What’s the power of this realization?
If we are aware that our emotions are driven by our thoughts about an event, we are less likely to be paralyzed when things don’t go our way. I’m not suggesting we stop caring about what happens in our lives. Instead, I propose we remind ourselves that we can choose the way we react to life’s circumstances. If something doesn’t go according to plan, we can choose to trust that we’ll overcome our obstacles and will learn valuable lessons.
Dr. Abraham Maslow stated that the greatest flaw of self-actualized people is that they get over death almost as if it hadn’t happened. He was referring to the power to change our thoughts about negative events. Maslow was Dr. Wayne Dyer’s teacher. Dr. Dyer is my spiritual teacher and author of There’s a Spiritual Solution to Every Problem, one of the most compelling books about how we can make problems literally disappear by a change in perspective. As Dr. Dyer always says, “If you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.”
Next time you’re faced with a difficulty, take a step back and remember the words in A Course in Miracles: “You have no problems though you think you have.” Trust that everything is working in perfect order. This clarity of mind will help you find the solution to the problem or overcome the obstacle.
If someone behaves in negative ways toward you, remind yourself that no one has the power to bring you down to negative energy fields unless you allow them to do so. As Eleanor Roosevelt said, “Nobody can make you feel inferior without your consent.”
Are you going through difficult times? What perspective will help you cope and deal with adversity?
Cloris Kylie Stock, MBA, is a coach, writer, public speaker, and radio show host dedicated to improving the lives of those around her. She is a sought-after lecturer who has achieved the highest Toastmasters designations in communication and leadership. Tune in to her online radio show, www.blogtalkradio.com/magnificent and read her blog, www.cloriskylie.com.
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