Hard things happen. Health, home, work or just weather. It’s out of your control and you can’t change it. Sometimes there are ferocious hardships, other times there are just bad days. But the unfortunate reality is that you don’t always get what you want.
The way I look at it, regardless of scope or scale, you can make it better or worse in the way that you respond.
You can dwell on what’s bad and what’s wrong, or you can get up and get on with your life.
When it comes to the wallowing, I understand the attraction. Sometimes we just want to lie on the couch, complain to our patient friends, and eat ice cream. And we deserve it! We’ve been wronged! It isn’t fair! Dwelling on the bad things feels a little bit like taking something back.
But once you’ve given yourself time to adjust to a new reality, you’re not getting anything back. You’re just creating a bubble of bad news around yourself. The air around you is thick with bad. It’s not great for you, and it’s not great for the people around you.
To me, the only alternative is to expand your perspective beyond that bubble. Be proactive about resolving bad situations, but don’t let them monopolize your attention outside that effort. Because there’s just no point. It’s doesn’t make sense to hand over more of your energy to the things that aren’t good. Your life has joyful things in it: focus on those. Intentionally choose to think and talk about those. If you don’t have good things to think and talk about: get some. Read something. Try something.
Not to be all mystical about it, but I believe that your attitude can actually have a real impact on your life. It can make you healthier. It can help you resolve (or make the best of) bad situations and create better ones. It’s really the only rational choice. This sounds preachy, but I’m saying it all anyway, because I’ve put it to the test myself. I’m doing it all the time.
I know it’s a cliche, but make the damn lemonade.