“It’s not the blowing of the wind that determines your destination, but the set of the sail. The same wind blows on us all. … It’s not what happens that determines your life’s future. It’s what you do about what happens.” -– Jim Rohn
Life is too short to get stressed out about every negative thing that happens. “Stuff happens” to everyone, but only a relatively few get a disproportionate share. Miserable people have just conditioned themselves to believe they get more stuff. And boy do they like to let us know about it!
Miserable people …
- focus on bad things so much that they get really good at finding them;
- blow things totally out of proportion, making small stuff bigger than life;
- turn good news into bad news;
- use stuff to get attention.
Have you ever heard someone whine incessantly about something and thought to yourself, “What’s the big deal?” Here’s an example. I recently overheard a man complaining that the cost of gas this year was probably going to keep him from going on vacation. This type of response could be expected from a whiner. Suppose the vacation would require 800 miles of driving. Now, we can all agree that the price of gas by American standards is very high (probably about $1 higher than last summer.) Suppose also that the vehicle of choice gets 20 mpg meaning it will cost an extra $40 (in gas) to go on vacation than it did last year. My conclusion is that if a mere $40 is enough to keep someone at home, he has much bigger problems than the price of gas. How sad that someone would pass up a vacation, make himself unnecessarily miserable, and drag others through his quagmire instead of simply solving the problem.
- Choose a destination that is 200 miles closer to home.
- Stay in less expensive hotels or come home one night earlier.
- Reduce dining out expenses by bringing food or skipping a meal.
- Bring a friend who will share some of the expenses.
- Go out and earn $40.
We choose our attitude in every situation. Enough of my words, here are some quotes on the subject.
“The pessimist sees difficulty in every opportunity. The optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.” -– Winston Churchill
“Pessimism is an excuse for not trying and a guarantee to a personal failure.” -– Bill Clinton
“Misery no longer loves company. Nowadays it insists on it.” -– Russell Baker
“A misery is not to be measured from the nature of the evil, but from the temper of the sufferer.” -– Joseph Addison
“I am still determined to be cheerful and happy, in whatever situation I may be; for I have also learned from experience that the greater part of our happiness or misery depends upon our dispositions, and not upon our circumstances.” -– Martha Washington
“The reason why worry kills more people than work is that more people worry than work.” -– Robert Frost
“Self-pity is our worst enemy and if we yield to it, we can never do anything good in the world.” -– Helen Keller
“Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff … and It’s All Small Stuff” -– Richard Carlson
“Don’t sweat the petty things and don’t pet the sweaty things.” — George Carlin
© Copyright July 2008, Clancy Cross. All rights reserved.
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