A friend of mine at work, Bob, sent me this adorable picture of his childhood dog and one of their pet chickens last week. I thought it was cute at first glance but, the more I looked at it, the more I realized that the photo had captured a much more interesting moment in time. The dog doesn't look aggressive and the chick doesn't seem scared. Doesn't it seem like the dog and the chick are just calmly regarding each other like they're old friends? I wonder what happened a moment after this was snapped?
You know, the older I get, the more I realize that it's the people in your life that really matter. Not the stuff you accumulate, not how big your house is, not how new your cars are or the 72" flat panel TV. I was lucky enough to be raised by grandparents who lived through the Great Depression and they never bought into the "keeping up with the Joneses" idea that now permeates through our society now. They saved butter bowls to use as Tupperware and even saved tin foil. I am forever indebted to them for teaching me the value of a dollar.
However, I didn't totally escape the pull of materialism, though. In college, I thought I had to wear the right clothes or drive a newer car. What a bunch of hooey! When I hit my 30's, I started to realize how ridiculous it was that we had to have a new car every 5 years. We were just throwing money away - money that we could save to retire early. The miserly bug had bit me again. But I also started to realize that the people in my life were even more important - family, good friends, bad friends, and even some of the toxic people at work have at least some redeeming qualities. Like the chick in the picture, I started regarding the people in my life with a new attitude.
Yesterday, I had the news on in the background and someone said something that really made me think. It went something like this:
- Step 1. Take out a sheet of paper and write down the biggest thing in your life that is making you unhappy. Write it as a sentence like "I am happy because.......". Could be a situation, a person, money issues, a personal shortcoming, etc.
- Step 2. Put it in an envelope and then put it somewhere for a few days.
- Step 3. Open the envelope and, first, resolve to do something to eliminate that from your life. Then come up with a plan for doing just that.
Why is this important? Because most people avoid conflict like it's the plague. We humans tend to take the easy way out. But why continue to have something in your life if it makes you miserable? Do something about it TODAY!
I'll give you my example. There's a guy at work that I have to work with and he happens to be a complete jerk. Everyone he works with or works for him pretty much agrees. Heck, he's even admitted it in a meeting. This guy has irritated the crap out of me for years and poor J. has had to listen to my rants when I get home from work about what a cretin this guy is. But I have resolved to not let that happen any more. I'm simply NOT GOING TO LET HIS ANTI-SOCIAL BEHAVIOR NEGATIVELY AFFECT ME. Because I can only control my attitude - he has to control his. My plan? To become his boss. :-)
Don't worry, be happy!
I've shared this post with this week's Weekly Top Shot hop. If you want to see some fantastic photos, go check it out!