How To Keep Your Sanity When Life Pulls A Fast One
Have you ever had one of those days where it takes a complete left-turn from what you anticipated?
Ever experience a "sure thing" only to have it all unravel at the 11th hour?
Do you ever feel you are a pawn in some sick and messed up game meant to torment and keep you down?
Are you feeling like sometimes your best laid plans go sideways without any rhyme or reason and you're left wondering "What The F*@k is going on?!"
Do you feel the Universe/God/Source is testing you beyond your limits of what's fair?
Today as I write this post, I am sitting in on of my favourite coffee shops in beautiful Vancouver. It's a gorgeous unseasonably warm spring day and the street is alive with people enjoying a stroll, run or trip to the market.
However, as idylic as this day appears. It has not gone my way at all.
No! In fact, I am dealing with a wee bit of a crisis.
I woke up with the intention of creating a great day and it started out that way. I had an awesome workout and enjoyed setting up my day. I've been visiting family and friends in Vancouver Canada over the last few days and also getting as much work done as I can.
A coaching client text me this morning to say he was going to a seminar down town. The same seminar I had tickets to but had deferred to go instead when the tour came home to Calgary next week.
I knew there would be a lot of old friends and acquaintances going and since I had not seen my client in person for some time I decided to get my butt in gear and head on down.
I took transit from my Dad's place in North Vancouver to down town Vancouver (About a 40 min trip) as it's the easiest and most hassle-free mode of transport here. (Driving in Vancouver is a test on many levels)
When I got to the venue, I quickly saw a huge line-up still on the street. The seminar started over two hours ago! I soon learned that the organizers oversold the show! Not a lot of happy campers based on the scowls looking back at me. I met an old friend in line who had been there two hours waiting to get in! I spoke with security and he informed me that there was not going to be any movement unless a large amount of those already inside were to give up their seats and leave.
So...I am asking myself why this would happen? What's the master plan for dragging me down town to a sold out event that I cannot attend? Nor can I meet with my client.
I was pretty zen about it as I knew I'd be going to the tour when it hits Calgary the following week. As well, I have a lot of social media work I need to get done. So I reframed it and was actually feeling great. I get a day to myself and I can hangout in my old neighbourhood and get work done uninterrupted.
Sounds pretty good right? Not a big deal. That is until I walked the few blocks to my favourite coffee shop, ordered my tea at the counter and realize my wallet is not in my brief case!!!
I begin the panic search! You know....feverishly rummaging through ever compartment, sleeve, pocket and fold. A sweat begins to beed on my forehead...Nope!
No where! WTF?!!
I go through every pocket of my pants and suit jacket!...Nada!
I then have to tell the barista to cancel the tea..."I don't think I have my wallet!"
I try to keep a cool and level head on the outside, while my mind is reeling from a sense of helplessness.
The barista response to my plight, "Don't worry about it sir...it happens."
So I realized I had to confirm with him that he'd have to just cancel the tea.
"We already poured it so you can grab it on the end of the counter....it's on us." He said with a smile.
With a gracious "Thank You!" The tea fiasco was averted, but that did not quell the sinking and even emasculating feeling of being without my wallet.
Man! The crap the mind can create!
I set up my table with my computer and my tea in hand and then wiped the sweat from my brow with a napkin and did three full breaths to calm myself down.
Where is my wallet?
I relaxed into the question and traced my steps back.
Where's my wallet?
Clarity comes fast once you let go of the fear.
The fear of being in a city I have to leave the next day.
The fear of someone having all my personal details.
The fear of having to replace all the banking and credit card details.
The Fear of no access to funds to get home.
The fear of losing my $65.00 cash!
Breathe...Where's my wallet?
With a clear mind and more relaxed state I soon recalled taking a business card out of my wallet to call a reporter this morning for some media work later this week. I promptly put my wallet on the kitchen counter at my Dad's place and it never made its way back to my brief case.
It had to be there! I could feel it!
I knew I had to do a blog today, so I went with what was going through my world in real time.
Within ten minutes of letting go of the need to be reunited with my wallet. My Dad's number came up on my phone. I just knew why he was calling.
"Hey...Do you have your wallet?!" He said with a somewhat sarcastic and humorous tone.
Then I told him the whole story.
He had just returned from his golf game and discovered my wallet on the counter exactly where I envisioned it being.
He also asked if I had the funds to get back.
Odd thing was I had just enough change for transit to get back!
I tell you this story because the guy I am today is not the guy from just a few years ago. This day and these sets of circumstances would have sent me into a tail spin of worry, anxiety and playing the victim with my reality.
I want to share with you what I did to transition out of a reactionary mindset when it felt like the Universe was testing my resolve.
How To Keep Your Sanity When Life Pulls A Fast One
1) Respond Rather Than React - When adversity hits we tend to default to a reactionary way of thinking. When we react it takes us out of our power. Reacting also puts us in blame mode. When you are in blame mode you are also powerless to do anything about it. You are waiting for someone or something to change or make it right.
When you respond you are in "Big Picture" mode. Responding gives you the ability to see things from different perspectives. You can take in more information and that gives you the ability to address the next point. Ask better questions.
2) Ask Better Questions - I know from experience that when the Sh*t goes down just how much free rein we give the irrational mind. The stink'n thinking questions come up to perpetuate the anxiety and fear you are already experiencing.
Here are a few powerful questions to help you to deal with what you are experiencing in real time:
"What's good about this right now?" I know that may sound crazy in the moment but If you keep asking it and bust through the ego, you'll be surprised at what you will come up with.
What's the lesson here? If you subscribe to the idea that everything happens for a reason then you know there is a lesson to be learned in every situation. They're there to help you get better, grow stronger and build confidence.
What can I do to change this? No matter what the situation or circumstance you are in, there is always a safety valve or "back door" to the solution. Getting yourself to relax and breathe into it will help you to access the parts of your consciousness where the answers lie.
3) Take Full Responsibility For Your Circumstances - Yeah this is a tough one for a lot of people. It sure was for me back when I didn't have the awareness I have today.
The truth is, you are the creator of your circumstances! No matter how messed up or challenging they may be...you are the reason it is happening.
You just have to rewind the film and review how your actions or inactions created the results you are experiencing. The proof is all there. You just have to have the courage to own up to it.
4) Breathe - When the hammer comes down and your efforts get squashed, doubt, worry and fear will cause you to breathe very shallow. In fact, most people are not breathing properly at any point in the day. I challenge you to start a routine of conscious breathing.
I mentioned that when I realized my wallet was missing one of the first things I did was breathe deep. There's a power here that is truly amazing. Conscious breathing is 3-10 full breaths...Breathing in to the belly for a 5-count, hold for a 5-count and exhale for a 5-count. Repeat this process increasing the count to 10 or more. I can now do a conscious breathe cycle up to 90 seconds or more.
What this does is oxygenates your blood. It gets more oxygenated blood to the brain and it will help to calm you. You can access your higher mind much more easily once you are relaxed and oxygenated.
5) You are never alone - In times of struggle and setbacks we often feel that our faith is being tested. We can feel abandoned by our maker. This disconnected way of thinking can really perpetuate the spiral down.
Regardless of your spiritual beliefs you are not disconnected to Source! Ever! In fact, in these times, dig in to what you hold close as your higher power. You are much more powerful than you can imagine.
The Universe/God/Source is never against you! Banish that idea for good!
Do not allow the moment of feeling disconnected to force you into playing small.
Allow for Source to show you a new possibility. Co-create your preferred reality!
You will continue to be tested on a regular basis. Especially if you are here to play at a bigger level. These tests are not from some malevolent god or energy out to spite you. They happen in order to test your resolve, your growth and your level of awareness in the moment.
The more purposeful you become the likelihood of things going sideways increases. This is a good thing because it reflects back that playing safe is not your way of living and you have a lot of things you are taking on to make the dream a reality.
You have an opportunity to handle it with grace, authentic leadership and with the idea that you are moving forward powerfully and fully supported.
Remember, When a door closes...another one always opens.
One final thought...When you are in a messy situation and you're not sure how to deal with it...Ask yourself, "What would a Remarkable Man/Woman do in this situation?"
Then keep asking it over and over until an answer comes that you can take authentic action on.
Remember, You are not alone on the journey...I've got your back!
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