Don’t Get Stuck in the Doom and Gloom of the World Around Us
It’s All About Choices: Choose to Be Thankful and Be Kind
The more I get out and talk with people, I find the most significant common denominator is that everyone is searching for a way to remain positive. We have in our midst a terrible pandemic, an uncertain economy, businesses still not opening, school children being taught online, an upcoming election, questions about our health and well-being and a general fear of the unknown.
As Boomers and seniors, we have been through a great many significant events in our life time, and somehow, we continue to persevere. Today is no exception as we honor the memory of 9/11 which occurred 19 years ago. Whether it’s by brute force or some other manifestation of fortitude, we make it through and come out the other end better people. I like to think it’s our innate form of positive thinking that carries us through. That is certainly the case with my BoomerGuy and me. We not only have to think positivity for ourselves, but how about all those wonderful people who we care for: family, friends, neighbors, business colleagues, golfing buddies, and in general, the communities in which we live.
There is so much going on at any given moment in time, we get confused, bewildered and anxious about outcomes, especially those that we don’t think we can control. We want things to be normal again. Well, I’m here to tell you hold on to your hat, because our new normal may not the old normal we were used to.
“Only when normal things are not normal anymore do we
realize how special normal things are…”
BoomerGals and BoomerGuys, there is no quick fix and we have to do everything we can to embrace what is going on around us, but more important within us. In my search for positive thinkers, I stumbled across an incredibly insightful man who has great suggestions on how to stay positive during this current adversity. His name is Mike Robbins and I want to personally thank him for his inspirational words of wisdom.
BE HONEST. Whenever we’re facing challenges, obstacles, or difficult circumstances, it’s important for us to be honest about how we truly feel. The most common feeling we experience at times are anger, fear and shame. We get scared that I may get worse or that other people or circumstances may continue to perpetuate the issue in a way we can’t control. And then we feel shame that perhaps we did something wrong or could have done something different to avoid the situation altogether. I’ve found that I don’t particularly like to acknowledge these emotions, but for me they are real, and probably real for you also. So what do I do, I express them, not necessarily to anyone else, but to me internally so that I can eliminate them from my daily routine and thus remove their negative impact.
BE CONSCIOUS. Here’s the tough one. Not only should you pay attention to what you’re feeling and how you’re thinking but be conscious of what you’re saying and the actions you are taking. Without judgment see if you can be very aware of everything that is going on within you and how you’re reacting to what’s happening. In the midst of stress and adversity we have a tendency to think, say and do things that don’t actually make things better and in many cases we make things worse. We complain, we worry, we speak negatively about life, others and ourselves, we watch way too much of the wrong things on TV, we over eat, we drink too much or we do things unconsciously that don’t serve us well. It’s not who we are; we’re acquiescing to our surroundings and circumstances and not being true to ourselves. Try to keep your mind about you, and be conscious about how your feelings, thoughts, words and actions might impact those around you. Transferring your thinking and actions to kindness will serve to make you more positive. As you learn and grow from your positive outpouring, you will be not only be an inspiration to yourself, but to others as well.
“The same boiling water that softens the potato hardens the egg. It’s about what you’re made of, not the circumstances”
BE GRATEFUL. Ah yes, the counter-intuitive way of thinking in the face of adversity, yet it’s probably the most important time for us to focus on what we appreciate about ourselves, our family, friends and life in general. When things go bad, like they are now during this pandemic, we’re given an opportunity to take inventory of the good stuff in our life that we may not otherwise have been paying attention to as we’re rushing our way through things. Take some time right this very minute and think about the bounty of things for which you should be grateful. Adversity can remind us that while things may be tough, we have so many blessings. Now here is where us Boomers really shine—there are so many things we can appreciate about the difficulty itself—we realize we’re stronger than we thought, we have more support around us than we knew, or most important, we are able to learn important lessons about ourselves and life. There is always a great deal to be grateful for if we choose to pay attention. You can’t feel grateful and victimized at the same, so Boomer’s, choose the former.
Please take a moment and kindly reflect on today’s memory 19 years ago when our country faced a most terrifying siege of terrorism. Like our current pandemic, this is a conflict that is far from over but we win when we confront these battles together as a unified nation. Check out our home page as we honor all those brave souls from 9/11.
Be kind to yourself and be present in as many moments as possible. And as Maya Angelou says:
“Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better”
Editorial contribution by Mike Robbins