It's so easy to let life knock the me down. There are so many petty little things that nip at my heels every day, just waiting to get a good grip and pull me backwards and sink me into a funk. So many times in the past I'd let that happen and let it affect my mood without realizing that the impact these things have on me is really my choice.
Most of the annoyances that come our way are small. Once you have made your mind up not to let them bother you, they can just wash over the top and barely make a mark on your life. It's actually a good feeling when you reach a point when you can let stuff like that go and know that you beat it by not reacting to it. It's taken me a long time to reach this point, but it's a good place to be in.
There can be bigger things that come along in life to hurt you - the betrayal of a friend, the angry words of a family member that result in a feud that affects everyone, awful workmates, marital problems, angry people on the road or elsewhere who make you feel threatened. These can seem insurmountable at the time, but often distance and a clear head (and a good dose of maturity and self confidence) can make all the difference and put them into perspective. After a while, even the big things often become small things when you don't give them the time and attention that they crave.
Richard Carlson sums it up so well in his book "Don't Sweat the Small Stuff" when he says that we can't be free from life's annoyances but we can free ourselves from being annoyed by them. A few years ago I would have doubted this, I let way too many things influence my feelings - but entering the second half of life has made me realize that time is short and it's not worth wasting emotional energy on people or events that drag me down. Life is much richer when you move on, take a deep breath and focus on the good things that come our way every day.
This post was part of the #1word challenge - this week's word was "breathe"