When stuff happens, it’s not the situation that really matters – it’s how we deal with it.
I had lunch with my friend Judy earlier this week, and we couldn’t believe well much our little ones were behaving… it was perhaps the perfect lunch in the behaviour stakes. They grinned, they ate, and they sat… which in toddler world is pretty outstanding.
Post lunch, I took munchkin out of his high chair, and we were on our way to the baby change… I looked down and noticed a lump of poop on the FLOOR OF THE RESTAURANT!
Suddenly there was more, and now munchkin was standing in it, and attempted to run away. OMG, his nappy had leaked, and there was a poo-explosion all over the restaurant floor.
I scooped up the poop, and little one, and carried him off to the bathroom while my friend dealt with the disinfectant. She was calm and wonderful, and I was so relieved she wasn’t horrified and retching.
I didn’t have a spare change of clothes (typical after all those days of lugging one around and you don’t need one). I somehow managed to roll up munchkin’s vest to avoid most of the poop, and his dungaree poppers were selectively pinned to avoid the poop, and I cleaned up the mess.
Sh*t happened, and (after a moment of mental effing) I chose to stay calm, and in control.
It got me thinking about life in general. Stuff happens to us everyday that we can’t control – from the boiler breaking to the pound tanking.
What we can control is our reactions to these events. We can choose to get annoyed and wound up by our unreasonable client, or we can choose not to. When they are shouting or hung-over or grumpy or whatever, we can either choose to be part of their energy, or we can rise above it. We can remain calm and present, but just refuse to feed their angry beast. And when don’t react to the situation, then this calms everyone down.
And when it comes to our children, being present really helps me to be a better parent. We can choose to get annoyed when munchkin has done something wrong, or we can choose to remain calm, and firmly explain why it’s not dangerous or allowed. And when we’re calm, we’re more in control, and they’re more likely to listen.
Eckhart Tolle talks about being present in his wonderful book “The Power of NOW.” It had such a profound effect on me about 15 years ago, and the ripples are still impacting my world now. He encourages you to be still, and focus on being present (and if you think you don’t have time to read, it’s awesome on audio book too).
This weekend, try being more present with your loved ones, and those around you, and just see what shifts occur in your life.
Have a wonderful weekend xx