Enough Said

No one is getting out of this life without experiencing problems. They come when you least expect them and can run the gamut of being serious to mundane.

Years ago problems were looked at as par for the course. My grandmother would gather her cronies for a little coffee and biscotti every once in a while and they would go through everyone’s stuff as if they lawyers. One of them would always act like the judge, either dismissing or condemning the perpetrators who had caused the  suffering of those at the gathering. Most of them would go away satisfied that they had been heard.

Today problems are still discussed with friends and family, but they also have become fodder for the media. A plethora of shows exist  whose primary purpose is to focus on people’s (issues), the new and more exciting word that describes problems. Issues are tantamount to being in dire distress and in need of experts to help a person through their stuff. Dr. Phil  and others have made their fortunes helping individuals navigate their problems, while millions watch them as they are reduced to tears or anger.

Realty shows have gone the next step, making us part of the action so that we, the viewer, is now in concert with the problems. I am always in awe at how many of these shows proliferate and become part of daily conversation. So now you not only discuss your problems but you also discuss the ones that you saw on a particular show.

When my grandmother had a friend who just kept going over the same scenario time and time again without resolution she would lift her hand up in the air and bellow “BASTA” which means enough. She had lost her patience and that was that! I wonder why we don’t hear more of that today? Why do so many of us have to go on and on about the same thing? I recently watched a very funny bit on YouTube with Bob Newhart. He portrayed a psychiatrist who said he could cure patients in five minutes. A young woman came in with a host of problems and when she was done speaking he said” are you ready for the cure”? “Yes”, she said. “Okay then”, just stop it! I’d like to add, get over it, do something about it, and stop talking about it. Enough said.


Words to Live By!

Too often we focus on what’s wrong with people, not what’s right. Our absence of heroic, virtuous individuals is a telltale sign of a culture that values perversity rather than morality. The reality shows featuring dysfunctional individuals is fast becoming the entertainment of choice.

What saddens me is that we are not acknowledging people who have been tested beyond anything most of us can imagine. I’ll never forget one man in particular who had Lou Gehrig’s disease. Two aids by his side, he sat in his wheelchair and smiled at me throughout my presentation. Afterwards his wife, who helped interpret for him, told me how happy he was to have attended my lecture and how blessed he felt to have his wife and others help him in his hour of need. Driving home, I had flashbacks of incidents in my life where I turned a hangnail or a traffic jam into a catastrophe. I know I’m not the only one that does this; otherwise, I wouldn’t be in business. What meeting this man taught me was that even in the most dire circumstances we can find “the bless in the mess”. It sounds rather esoteric, but there are many incidents that can be reframe into something that becomes easier to tolerate by making small mind shifts.

Our perceptions create our realty, and some of us seem to want to make a situation much worse than it is, because we’re hooked on drama. Consider the simple act of waiting in a line. It can be frustrating, but it really isn’t a death sentence. According to a study done at MIT, you’re going to spend three years of your life waiting in lines. Why make it feel like prison? You might want to consider the fact that while you’re waiting you are literally at rest. Nothing to do and no one around to make demands on you. Of course that means you have to stay off your cell phone. No one really needs to know you’re in line. They need a break to.

Life will consistently challenge you in many different ways. If you develop skills to handle the inevitable glitches, you will gain tremendous resiliency. The title of author Richard Carlson’s book says it best, “Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff…and it’s all small stuff” Words to live by!

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