Have you noticed that life does not always go as planned? When I was 4 years old, life did not go as planned. My father was murdered. Three years ago, life did not go as planned as I watched my mother breathe her last breath and then 14 months later, life did not go as planned as my stepfather passed. All of a sudden, I was in a place I had never been ever in my entire life; I no longer had parents. Mom and dad were gone.
So what do we do when life does not go as planned? For me, it's easy to get ticked-off and kind of just sulk. For many, it's easy to get depressed, stuck in our emotions and feel helpless. However, I've realized that there are 3 legit superpowers right at my fingertips which I can use when life does not go as planned. Here is the cool thing: Whenever I have called upon these 3 superpowers, I've won 100% of the time!
3 Legit Superpowers!
1. Gratitude is the GATEWAY!
The path to hope and joy is gratitude. There is always something to be grateful for even in the midst of life not going as planned.
September 10, 2017 at 1:00 PM, I no longer had parents. They were now both gone. As sadness began to wash over me, I called upon gratitude to enter the fight. You see, as much as I did not want either of my parent s to be gone, I realized how blessed I had been to have my parents right up to the age of 56 years old. BOOM! Gratitude allowed me to be sad, which is a very normal emotion. The danger comes when depression enters the scene. Gratitude was the gateway to my hope on that September day!
2. Positive acceptance of life's ups and downs is the first step FORWARD.
Trust me when I say I don't like it one bit when life does not go as planned. However, things not going as planned is pretty normal. When I call upon the 2nd legit superpower, positivity, amazing things happen!
Positive acceptance of things not going how I expected is kind of like opening a door just slightly and getting a peek of what might be.
Let me give you an example. When I realized I no longer had parents, I saw how easy it is to take for granted those whom I love. The positive acceptance of realizing that every person on the planet will someday pass opened my eyes. I, just like everyone else on the planet have an expiration date...someday, I too will pass. This positive acceptance has helped me to see those who I love with a much GREATER appreciation. This positive acceptance of real life has allowed me to live my life in a much more passionate manner.
3. There is a time for ACTION.
You know, when things don't go as planned and something very sad or even tragic has happened, it's quite normal to slow life way down and be chill...contemplative. However, being chill for too long is not good. The 3rd legit superpower is to move forward and kick some butt...ACTION!
After my parents had passed. I was chill for a while but then I knew it was time for some positive action. I did two important things in my day. First, I would get up very early in the morning. This action was all about me being alone with a cup of coffee, my gratitude and positive thoughts. The second action was when I would come home from work, I'd put on shorts and tennis shoes and go for a walk. The fresh air moved me with joy and hope. I'd look up at the deep blue sky and smile as I remembered the many blessings mom and dad brought to my life and then suddenly, I passed some stunning wildflowers that would stop me in my tracks. The fresh air, the deep blue sky and the brilliance of the wildflowers were a triad of strength, healing and hope. These two simple yet purposeful actions in my day played a significant role in defeating the destruction of what could have been depression or even anxiety. BOOM! Super power number 3 crushes!
I'd love to hear from you. When life has not gone as planned for you, what you have used in your life to help you?