Stress Buster: What kind of Fireworks do you Have?
The dictionary definition of independence is: Freedom from outside control; not depending on another’s authority. Let’s explore what the dictionary says about dependence: The state of relying on or being controlled by someone or something else. Ahhh, this now makes sense – if we are not dependent to someone of something, then we are independent.
First let’s look at what or who has control over you on a daily basis. You might be thinking – well; my boss, my health, my children, the economy, my bank account, my dog (one of my personal favorites.) Yes, these things certainly affect us, but why would they control us? One simple reason: We allow them to. It boils down to your mind’s reaction to what is happening. We are bound by our thoughts and reactions, and it robs us of our freedom.
Think about your day and look at the parts of the day when you feel out of control. I would venture to say that you will find it is due to your reaction to a given person, event, or situation.
This happened to me just the other day. I was on time for my 9:50am doctors follow-up visit and allowed 3 hours before I had an afternoon full of appointments. When I walked in (after looking for a parking space of 10 minutes) much to my dismay, there was a room full of people all waiting to be seen by my doctor. I asked about the wait time and get a 45 minute time frame. I know that 45 minutes is what it would take to get me to the back where I would wait another 45 minutes. I admit I felt frustrated. To keep me from feeling trapped in a circumstance beyond my control, I made a decision not to allow my wait time to keep me from working and enjoying my afternoon commitments – I rescheduled and walked out. I must admit, I was still frustrated as my time is as valuable as the doctors time and felt my old toughness seep in.
I would like to say that I sat, breathed, felt stillness and quickly returned to a Zen state, but the truth is this: The radio was playing Elton John’s song: The bitch is back and I laughed at how much I was relating at the moment!
Yes, there are times when our thoughts will be taken over by circumstances that are out of our control. The question becomes: how long do you want to lose the freedom of enjoying your day? I lost about 10 minutes of my precious day and that is more than enough for me.
Here is the empowering concept that I find helpful so I can live my life with less dependence on people, places, and things.
It is not the event that is causing your stress but your reaction to the event.
This Fourth of July, celebrate your independence by remembering that you have a choice about how you want to show up to your day. When you do this; your fireworks will transform from frustration and anger to spontaneity, clarity, and joy. Happy Fourth of July!
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