There are a lot of small things I just adore.  I can get immense pleasure from small things. the flip side is that sometimes I can make myself utterly miserable from a really small thing as well. Looking at a crack, that was what I was doing yesterday…. and proceeded to beat myself up a bit about a very small thing even though that is not  productive. A  hundred times or maybe even a thousand I have said to people, “What you focus on gets larger”.  I should listen to my own advice.

Figure out what you could have done differently, practice mentally, move on. That is what I want to do. The trick is talking  myself into doing just that. So here was a chance to practice reframing a small thing.

Get it In Perspective

 Meany me is a title I gave the part of myself that is overly self-critical.  It puts it in a more lighthearted context like the movie character that inspired the title.  I  imagine this character shaking his finger at me saying the mean things you might say to yourself when you make a mistake. It takes the edge off. This is a much better perspective. I really hate meany me and wasn’t fond of the character in the movie either. It really motivates me to do something else.

Reframe Still Further

Then it helps to think of something I am grateful for.  It helps to remember that maybe a missed opportunity was a good opportunity to miss and there will certainly be others. There are always others. It helps to remember what my best friend would say.  

Mental Rehearsal

 I can mentally replay my mistake with the better actions I wish I had made. When people do that it is much more likely they will actually do something different the next time a similar situation arises. The sting of the mistake makes it more likely I will remember to make the change as well. This doesn’t have to be realistic. It can be fanciful or silly at first if I am having a hard time thinking of a good solution.  I can play out lots of different ideas. It makes it all much more fluid. The better idea will arise from this process.

Once that is done, time to forgive myself  and relish the view, the improved one that results from letting go regrets from things I cannot change. So what was it that I got so wound up about? I missed a phone call. It was such a small thing. This embarrasses me. It was just I did not want to.  It was not a flood or a famine or the Phillies losing the playoff after having a winning season all year.  

One last thing:  I ran across this quote today.”Never regret. If  it is good, it’s wonderful. If it’s bad, it’s experience.” – Victoria Holt. Next time I plan to remember to check for messages when I get out of the tomb with no cell signal.

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