Wednesday, October 23, 2019

The Phrase That Changed Everything

There is always good to be found in any challenging situation. My father is the king of silver linings and I inherited from him the ability to find the light and the lesson everywhere I go. But thinking this way requires a shift in mindset and flipping a situation on its head and looking for the upside is not always easy. I was only able to truly embrace this in talking to my two best friends, Adam and Katie, on Voxer.

Every day on my commute to and from work, the three of us share stories about our lives - Work, marriage, kids, goals and struggles. We listen and give advice, and through these conversations I have come to realize that Voxing has become something of a therapy session. In our three years of talking on Voxer, I noticed one specific phrase that Katie uses when offering advice. It’s the phrase that flipped the switch in my brain and completely shifted my line of thinking:

When asking for advice about an argument I had with my husband over how we dealt with our two year old’s tantrum, her response was: How lucky are we to have husbands who are our equals? How lucky are we to have husbands who are so dedicated to raising our children with us? When I was stressing out over how to execute a demo lesson, her response was: How lucky are you to have this opportunity to present a lesson at such an incredibly reputable and successful school district? And when my kids were sick and the washing machine broke all in the same week (it felt very dramatic at the time), she told me: How lucky are you to have a profession that allows you the time and flexibility to come home and meet the repair man after work?

Don’t get me wrong, it is important to acknowledge and process the emotions of each situation, but at the conclusion of our conversations is always the inevitable ‘How Lucky Are We’ statement that reshapes the scenario and puts things into perspective.

So here's my task for you: Next time you are faced with an overwhelming challenge, try to temporarily step away from the messy emotions and dig deep to figure out what the bigger lesson might be. Ask yourself the 'How lucky am I...' question and take a few deep breaths, understanding that eventually all the pieces will fall into place.

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