You knock over the cup of freshly poured coffee and it splashes across your pants as you’re rushing to get out of the house on time. Now you have to change your pants.
You pick up your toddler who promptly uses your shoulder as a tissue. Now you have to change your shirt.
You somehow manage to get everyone into the car and realize your gas tank is almost on ‘E’. You silently berate yourself for not stopping to get gas when you did the grocery shopping over the weekend and drive to the gas station to fill up before dropping off the kids. There’s a puddle by the pump and, despite seeing it and telling yourself to step over it, promptly step right into it. Now your shoe is soaked.
And all that happened in a matter of 15 minutes.
We’ve all been there. Whether it’s a manic Monday morning, or just a typical weekday morning trying to get everyone to where they need to be on time, nothing seems to go right and you can’t seem to get out of your own way.
This is just life happening. Though you can’t always influence what happens, you can choose how you respond to it. Was it an adventure, something worth laughing about and sharing later? Or was it a disaster, something that got you frustrated, aggravated and disappointed before your day even started?
I admit I have totally slipped into feeling like a victim or getting aggravated by a rough morning and allowed myself to stay there all day. Why does this always happen to me? Or why does everything now make me angry and irritated? Can this day just start over? Ugh, forget it. I’m done with this day.
Notice the phrase I used: allowed myself. I kept myself aggravated and irritated all day. It was my choice. And since it was my choice, why did I choose that response when I could also have chosen to let it roll off me, not affect me and not have me take it on others?
This is why being self-aware is so important. When you can recognize events as just events, when you can acknowledge that life happens and you’re human, when you can identify your reaction vs. a response to an event, you can start to shift your responses to something more productive. Though you can choose to be hurt, angry or frustrated, you can also choose to laugh it off, find the humor in it and move past it. Your mantra: everything is an opportunity and nothing is personal.
So remember, mornings can be manic, but only you can decide how the rest of your day will be. Choose your response wisely.
Important Questions from a Coach:
- Do you react or respond to the events associated with the morning rush?
- What is one thing you can do differently to become more self-aware during the morning rush to make the conscious effort of responding vs. reacting?
- If you find yourself in feeling like a victim or getting angry after an event, what is one thing you can do to start to shift your response to something more positive and upbeat?