By Kristin Allaben, Executive Assistant and Strategic Communications Specialist
Life is full of little moments to remember, to laugh at, to share, to take a mental picture and hope you never forget. Sure, life can present you with some incredibly frustrating situations, like:
- You reach for the chocolate jimmies (or “sprinkles,” if you’re not from Massachusetts) and end up putting parsley flakes on your ice cream instead.
- You spill coffee on your shirt right before a big meeting.
- The cover on the salt shaker is loose and you end up pouring salt onto your food.
- You pour milk in your coffee and discover it has gone bad…after you take your first sip.
- Your 1-year old insists on feeding himself and gets applesauce all over the kitchen.
How many of these moments can you relate to?
These are moments that can get under your skin and, I admit, there are some days when life’s little frustrations and irritations can certainly push me over the edge. I’m human.
But I have found that what I choose to do in the next moment is what makes all the difference. It is my choice. I can let life’s little moments ruin my day, or I can choose to see the moment as a human event. It’s the difference between reacting vs. responding.
When you pour parsley flakes on your ice cream, take a picture and share with family or friends who will get a kick out of it. And if you’re really craving that ice cream, scoop the parsley out and eat the ice cream anyway.
When your 1-year old gets applesauce all over the kitchen, take a mental picture of the grin on his face and grab your phone to share a picture of the “disaster” with family. Remember, this is a learning experience for him and he’s proud of himself for getting *some* of that food in his mouth by himself. He is, in fact, just [a small] human.
Life is full of little irritating and frustrating moments – you choose if they will make or break your day. And now that you see you have the choice, why would you choose to let them break your day?
Important Questions from a Coach
- Imagine a “little moment” when your reaction was a negative one. How did it impact your day?
- Think about those you came into contact with that day – your colleagues, your kids, your friends. How did your mood/attitude impact their day?
- What could you have done differently in the moment that followed to change your behavior?
I frequently think of Pam and Jim’s wedding episode from The Office. In the car, on their way up to their wedding location, Pam tells Jim a relative suggests taking a mental picture during the day to ensure you don’t forget a great little moment.
So, when life’s little moments present you with something incredible, take the mental picture, especially when those little moments require a deeper look to find that incredible component to remember.