Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Fighting the numbness of frequency


Have you ever fallen into the frequency trap?
So much of life is a simple matter of routine. Same drive to work. Same people surrounding you. Same church on Sunday, Same chicken dinner every Tuesday and on and on and on it goes.

Frequency creates numbness to our surroundings and often to our life. To break free, many people end up seeking a rush hoping to escape and find excitement. This can be positive with goals to learn new skills, go on a special trip, try that food that cannot be pronounced, start that devotional, go for that dream job. Of course there are unhealthy ways to break out that often lead to debt, distress and even divorce.
Getting un-numb productively takes work but most of all takes awareness. It seems too often that we take for granted those things that are frequent. The seemingly mundane can be our best window to happiness if we simply take a moment to realize these are the moments that truly make our lives meaningful. There is no need to go jump out of a plane or run with the bulls. Perhaps instead we need to just add some spice and some thought to the greatness that surrounds us every day.

Imagine how much better that drive with the kid to school could be with some deeper conversation on the way? Imagine the smile on your partner’s face from an unexpected hug? Imagine how much deeper your time with God could be with just a few minutes in prayer to start the day. Heck, even that Tuesday chicken dinner could be better with just a slightly different spice.
For me, I love the frequent as it brings sustaining comfort and opportunities for appreciation of the present. Perhaps your best opportunity is right in front of you too.

Friday, September 6, 2013

Get your but out of my way

Years ago I used to facilitate a course that had a section about attitude. I began the session with a little exercise with the folks in pairs to share a story. The conversation had to be about a plan for the future and for round one no matter what person #1 shared the second person was to respond “yes but!”

“I am really looking forward to the weekend with my family”

Yes but it looks like it is going to rain all weekend so you will not be able to do much.”

“My son is doing great is school right now”

Yes but you know college is going to be super expensive and most likely he will struggle to get a job when/if he graduates.”

The round two response had to be a positive “yes and

“I am really looking forward to the weekend with my family”

Yes and with the rain you could play some really fun board games with great conversations.”

“My son is doing great in school right now”

Yes and that is a terrific indicator of a positive future ahead.”

You kind of get the idea huh? The point of the conversation was to help people identify if they are a “yes but” or a “yes and person”
Sadly yes but tends to be my nature with my internal voice. Thankfully in in part due to this exercise I am always striving for the yes and instead. It really is amazing the difference switching that word can make in your attitude, outlook and life.
Even more sadly is the number of yes but’ers I see around me all the time. These folks are joy killer constantly striving to have everyone sink to their low level of negativity.

I say…..Keep your but out of my way!
What about you? Are you a yes and or a yes but person? How to you keep negative people out of your life?

Don’t let a but get in your way.