The last few days have been chaos to say the least. Between what we hear on the news, what we hear from other people around us and the stories we create in our own heads it’s gotten pretty nuts. It almost feels like a strange movie to some degree. One in which we don’t know the ending.
As a result of “not knowing”, it’s crazy how much information we are processing and the fear associated with it. It’s become an information and emotional overload. Both being negative in context. Plain and simple, it’s exhausting and toxic to the rest of our lives. I don’t know about you but it’s been a lot.
I have to admit, I have fallen into this negative, fear-based trap here and there over the last couple days. Some thoughts that have creeped through my mind…
“Maybe this is going to be the real deal this time.”
“What happens when we have this new baby in 2 months and the hospitals are full?”
“This might affect my family in bad way both from a health and financial perspective.”
“Will this tear-up our businesses if they shut things down or everybody gets sick?”
“What happens if this never goes away?”
“What if this is a start of a yearly trend?”
Those are all legit thoughts I’ve had. They have come…and they have gone.
That’s the key. They have gone. They don’t linger. I choose not to let them. It’s a skill I have developed intentionally.
Yes, each and every one of those thoughts I have had could happen and it could get worse. They could. I know that. I accept that possibility.
I could focus on them.
I could live with fear because of that.
I could be paralyzed by that thought and feeling.
I choose not to.
It’s a choice.
It’s a discipline.
What I’m saying here is we all have choices right now. Choices that affect our quality of life to a significant degree moment by moment.
I’m not talking about whether we choose to go out in public or not.
I’m talking about what we CHOOSE to keep in our head and what we choose to let go of.
To simplify - here are the 3 choices we are all making right now consciously or not…
1. Attention – What are you focusing on? What bad is possibly going to happen? Or what is the opportunity for good here?
2. Emotions – What emotions are you living with right now? Is it a constant state of fear of the unknown? Or is it a state of curiosity and gratitude for good that is going to come from this?
3. Actions – What are you committed to doing to grow right now with this and from this? Or are you stuck in a state of paralysis and/or fear-based actions “until things clear up”?
Each one of these states is a choice. Every moment you are making a choice. Sometimes you consciously are. Most of the time you aren’t.
Be conscious. Be aware. Make the choice you want…and need to make. Take the high road. Don’t join the herd choosing by fear. Start sheparding a herd with some damn faith. There are people that need you to lead this way.
Yes, it’s tough to make the decision in every circumstance to be “positive”. The truth is you won’t be. You just need to make more right decisions than wrong decisions to win.
Here’s the facts: It’s tough to be positive when people are around you being the opposite of that. It’s tough to focus on the good when the rest of the world is focuses on “what could happen”. It’s tough to keep moving forward when everyone else is stuck and paralyzed by the fear that has been created and spread. It’s tough. I get it.
That’s where the discipline comes in. Just like it’s tough to be a good parent sometimes you do it because it matters to your kids. Just like it’s tough to be a supportive spouse when it doesn’t “feel” good you still do it because it matters to them. Just like you don’t always “like” going to work or the gym because it’s not fun you do it anyways because it matters. Just because you don’t like doing the right thing every time you do it because it does matter and because it is WHO you are.
That’s why you do tough things (if you do). It’s WHO you are. That’s what feeds your ability to stay disciplined to those areas. It’s WHO you are because the WHY you do it (your kids, your spouse, your team at work, your neighbors, your community) need you to show up that way. No excuses. You OWN that responsibility. It’s WHO you are. You ALWAYS honor that code to yourself.
Own that here…today. Your choices right now matter… Your attention and focus. Your emotions. Your actions. They are all seen, heard, and felt by those around you right now. That’s why THIS matters. BE the STANDARD right now.
Stand for them if they can’t stand for themselves right now. Don’t let them down. That’s how we grow from this. That’s how you grow from this. Dig in. Don’t break.
Make the right choice each and every moment. Some moments you will slip. Just don’t slip twice in a row. That’s how you win this game. Moment by moment, CHOOSE how you show up in these 3 areas. Every thought, feeling, word and action matter. Make them count.