FALSE expectations

Inveterate worrier that I am, my approach to any uncertainty lying ahead is to immediately expect the worst. It’s a terribly stressful and unnecessary exercise that I have repeated countless times through the years. I am the worrywart’s Don Quixote, tilting at non-existent windmills of gloom. You’d think that after all these years of pointless mental jousting with the voices of others that fill my head that I’d have learned my lesson. But no.

I awoke at 1 am yesterday and never really completely went back to sleep; all I could imagine was the disastrous day ahead. Exhausted, I would run late, miss my workout, be grumpy, hungry, forgetful and unproductive (my own personal four dwarves), and drag myself to an after-hours work event at which I would have a glass of wine that would bring on another lousy night of sleep.

You can imagine my surprise, then, when I actually had a really good day. I did some yoga, touched base with an old friend, accomplished a lot at work and put a lousy past week behind me. I set up a whole week of things to look forward to outside of work, and – almost miraculously – stayed awake until I got home at 7 last night. The only worrying I did was when I started feeling a little nauseated at my after-work event, but even that went away.

I’ve recently encountered several books that all espouse the same principle: you get back from the world what you put out into it. Send out negative energy, and you’re just opening the door for more negative energy to rush in. Think positively, and your world becomes the rosy place you expect it to be. It all sounds a little farfetched, but people keep swearing that it works.

What to make, then, of negative energy that nets so many positive things in return? Maybe all I needed was one positive effort – hauling my tired ass out of bed to do some yoga and get my blood pumping – to change the course of my day. Maybe it just took an effort to solve my own frustration at work instead of expecting someone else to fix it.

We have become a society of victims; I plead guilty to falling in with the crowd. It’s as heartening as it is foreign, then, to think that we can create a new reality. I’ve discovered that changing your thoughts is one of those simple things that’s very, very difficult to do. So here’s a new thought: maybe all it takes is one small step to get the ball rolling in the right direction.

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About Mindy

I am divorced, no kids, working full-time in corporate communications. There are never enough hours in my day, mostly because I insist on hygiene, food, exercise and clean dishes. Really, how do women with kids do it?!?
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