How to Be Awesome When Life Goes Sideways

Listen.  Life is going to kick us in the shins every now and again.  Things are going to go sideways more often than we can count.

Relationships will ebb and flow, and we’ll have a hard time not eating that extra piece of chocolate cake, or the job we apply for isn’t going to happen.

Friends are going to talk behind our backs, we’re going to injure ourselves at the gym, or on the run, or getting off the couch, or heading downstairs to do laundry (trust me..I tore my Achilles taking a step down to finish doing laundry – CRAZY!), and we’re going to get down on ourselves with a whole lot of negative self talk when our focus shifts from what matters to us, to something a little bit more manageable and trivial.

In my case, the people at TEDx haven’t been in touch and they are announcing their speakers starting next week.  If I were going to be one of their speakers, I would’ve heard from them already.  A really good reason for me not to be awesome don’t you think?

When in reality, I had the balls to send in a speaker application. Did you hear that.  I. HAD. THE. BALLS. TO APPLY.  THAT is what makes me awesome! The other day, a friend of mine, sent me an email.  She often sends me emails, randomly, so the other day was no exception.  In the email she’d sent a link. The email said “I think you need to apply to be on the Jeff Probst show.” So, I opened up the link, and I applied. There’s a question on the application that says “Share your story”…so I shared a story. I didn’t know exactly what story they wanted, as I had no context for why she wanted me to apply. But I did it anyway.

Why?  Because life is so much more fun being a YES than a maybe, or an outright no. 

There is so much more to life than the neighbour keeping you up at night, or a job not being gotten, or a bill not getting paid, or a car breaking down, or a flat tire.  Even when all of those things happen, we still have the option. Do we keep being awesome, or do we let those things take us sideways? Is life really about circumstances? Are we only temporarily awesome?  Are we fair weather awesome? No. It’s all in perspective. Choice.

One of my most favorite things is when someone says “I’ve had the worst day ever!” And I ask “Tell me what happened…” And they start off with “Well my car wouldn’t start…” Or the one that always makes me smile on the inside “Someone cut me off on the way to work this morning…” Then I say “And then what happened…?” And they say…”Well, nothing. But the day just sucked.”

We all have the option to hit the reset button at any time. There’s no rule book that states that just because you got cut off on the way to work, or you missed your bus, or your car wouldn’t start, or you had a flat tire, that says you no longer have to be awesome in the rest of your life. Not even close.

I used to be one of those people.  Something slightly off kilter would happen, and it would make me cranky and turn my entire day into a schmozzle.

Then, something else happened. I started to see my life differently.  I started to notice that something happened, and I could let it make me cranky for the rest of the day and impact every single person I came into contact with through the entire day OR I could take that thing that happened, look at it for a few minutes, examine it, turn it around, see it from another angle, maybe talk to someone about it, and then, hit reset.

Nothing says we have to let one bad thing take us out of the rest of our lives.  Missing the bus doesn’t have to be a bad thing. Maybe you missed the first bus so you could get on the next one, and meet a super cute guy…or maybe you got a flat tire, so you wouldn’t be on the road at the same time a house is being moved which would make you late for work anyway. There are so many other perspectives. So many other ways of seeing life.

We all have moments where life goes sideways.  We all have that in common.  It happens.  Nothing can change that it happens. It just does. It’s not personal. It just happens. And contrary to popular belief, it happens to good people.

It’s how we interpret what happened that sets the stage for life.

What if the awesome meter was always set to awesome?  What if we could alter our own experiences of life simply by changing the setting?  What if you just shifted your perspective slightly from what happened being a personal attack to a life experience that could potentially teach you something?  What if your level of brilliance had nothing to do with the “what happened’s”?  What if you were amazing simply because you were?

I bet you’d walk taller. I bet you’d strut more.

So. Here’s my challenge to you. The next time something happens, and you see your day/life going sideways faster than you can say supercalafragalisticexpialadotious, remember the reset button. Take a deep breath. Sit up, and put your shoulders back, and reset yourself to awesome.

go be awesome

Rita

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Comments

  1. Okay. I’m suitably impressed you could spell supercala — well, you know. Truth — did you look it up in the dictionary, Rita? :)

    I think one of the biggest gifts a medical wake-up call can give you — I mean the kind of wake-up call that has you wondering for a while how many more wake-ups are in the cards for you — is that it teaches you what’s important and what isn’t. Of course you forget the lesson occasionally, and the car not starting or the flat tire throws you off. But you don’t forget for long. It’s a hard but effective way to learn this particular life lesson.

    I’m thinking we are just about as awesome as we make up our minds to be. Ditto our lives. Be glad you’re you. There’s nothing better to be than that. Be glad you’re alive. There’s nothing better to be than that.

    • Carol. Nope. No dictionary. It’s a darn good thing I’ve been hooked on phonics for years and years. I just sounded it out. :) I’ve no idea if I actually did that correctly but it looks good and you got the picture.

      I’ve never had a medical wake-up call, gratefully, but yes, I imagine that would be something of a kick in the pants. All of those things are just life’s way of keeping us on our toes. The flat tires and the cars not starting and the missed buses. Life should never have that much power over us that we have sucky days because of it.

      thanks for always leaving me a comment and almost always being the first. xo

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