So you come home, bloody exhausted after a long day, longing to jump into bed and………sleep. After sitting down for five minutes though you manage to swallow down a slice of (raw) cheese and some fruit, put on your warmest clothes and…walk over to the neighbor’s to get the dog out. You are welcomed by wet kisses and paws that go everywhere they aren’t supposed to. Then you are taken for a walk (this dog has a mind of her own – you can try to walk her, but she will walk you. Or sit down on her ass and refuse to move). This time she dragged me along to a tiny little park (or empty lot of land). It was freezing cold (it actually snowed for five minutes that day!!!) and the wind was gently rustling around in the bushes. Looking up at the night sky it was beautifully lit by stars. It was like the perfect romantic moment…until a palm tree started making weird noises (I couldn’t decide whether it was the wind shaking it, or if someone was standing behind it and having a blast watching my face turning paler and paler…I naturally decided that it was the first, but a sense of…practicality, shall we say…made me consider other options…) and I decided we better go home (which I managed to pursue her Majesty to agree to).
To sum it all up – I had a wonderful walk (minus the palm tree, but that is…a minor detail). Mainly because her Majesty had been home alone all day and was super excited to see me, which made me happy. And I got to have imaginary conversations with her and pet her head for an hour. I mean surely, we all know that it helps talking to yourself???… It’s the best ever remedy for solving problems. Especially when a dog listens and clearly understands every single word (not).
My point with all this rambling…I did have one and it wasn’t the palm tree you see…
“Murder me with sex appeal”….no that’s just something I heard on the radio…
So yeah, the point….hold your breaths, please…is that when I walked to get the dog out I didn’t do it for my sake – I was ready to pass out on the couch. I did it for her sake. And as I strotted along with her on this freezing cold night I thoroughly enjoyed myself. Why? Because I wasn’t thinking about my own problems. I was focused on what was making the doggy happy.
Often we get a bit caught up in the general mess of things (a.k.a. our lives). I know what it feels like. I do it all the time. That’s why I like friends and coaches as they will look at things from a different POV (point of view) and suddenly the “problems” have been re-framed into solutions. E.g. “I’m going through a divorce, it’s really hard with the lawyers, all the memories when we first got together, all the crushed dreams…!” ….re-frame… “I am so happy I am finally free to live life on my terms again, having learnt what I did about relationships and now being so much more ready for spending time with myself and finding my ultimate mate.”
I know, I know…it’s very tempting to sit and think about “the good old days” when you were having so much fun with your now ex, or your company was making a million more a year, or your house was ten times bigger… Yet, in this moments lies all the opportunities in the world. And if you have a look around, maybe you will discover that you, at least for a day, can take a break from your problems. How? You can live for someone else for a day. You can set your worries aside and worry for them instead. You can pour all your heart and mind into their lives You can try out what it feels like thinking about something else all day long. Oftentimes I don’t understand how people have the energy to keep up all their problems. And when you look at them from the outside you see how utterly ridiculous they are as well…because often they aren’t real. And even if they are, shouldn’t the question be: what can I do right now to make the most of my life? Not sitting blaming yourself, others and the world. Shit happens. Your attitude is your own.
A lot of my problems in the past have been ego. The need to be perfect. The need for success. So for me to focus on giving, instead of what others think of me is a huge thing. I always want to help others, but often, at least in the back of my mind, I have also worried about other peoples’ opinion of me. And it has, quite frankly, ruined my life. It has taken the joy out of so many things. (This is why I should go to a karaoke night and do a solo number. Then the worry will be gone. Ahem…)
As I see it, there are about four ways to solve a problem:
1) Face the fear so that the fear disappears. Imagine the worst ever that could happen. Imagine living through that with a positive attitude. (There’s a difference between the person dying saying: “I am so thankful for the life I have had. I am so thankful for the experience I was given and for these last few days to truly enjoy my life.” And the person saying: “This is unfair. This shouldn’t be me. There’s no point to life. I’m dying anyway.” I know that’s taking it to the extreme, but when I was facing my own fear of dying, I had to do just that.)
2) Re-frame it: From problem to opportunity.
3) Solve the problem. Some problems have to be solved. Ask for help if you need it. Don’t be ashamed you have a problem. We all have problems.
4) Leave it. We all want success in a ton of different ways. Yet, success may not be what we think it is. May not make us smile, laugh and love life. Instead of wanting to become a multi-millionaire…go volunteer at the local hospital, help a friend, donate your energy to giving… Invest your time in other peoples’ problems. Maybe you will discover yours don’t exist and maybe, just maybe you will find a new meaning to life.
5) (P.S. Remember: love is all there is.)
So ya know. Next problem that comes along: murder it with sex appeal. No one can resist you when you turn it on. When those long lashes of yours come this way…and that heart of yours is turned on…who can resist love? True heartfelt love? Not I… So turn it on and turn it up. I’m gonna go hide behind the couch before you drop by here….ah right, you don’t have my address anyway, so maybe I’ll be safe for another day???…