You know this process.
Something happens and we react with “What the Frappachino? This sucks. Why me? What’s happening here?”
And then what happens? Sometime later, we realize the value, gift, or opportunity that was imbedded in that WTF event and we say, “Oh my God…so THAT was the awesome reason that happened.”
Like I said, you know this process. We are in the process of writing a book of the same title above.
Like me, you probably can recall quite a few of these transformations. So what’s it all about? Why do we react so negatively to these disguised blessings?
Here’s what I think. I think that we have an overactive protective ego mechanism that knows that change is going down and it knows that any change to status quo is a mega threat to its definite major purpose. It believes that you must maintain the status quo or you will die. That’s it: change equals death, plain and simple. So the ego prompts our body, intellect, emotion, and spirit to react and scream….Whaaaaaat the Fuuuuuuuu??? And eventually we come to realize that this seemingly negative situation – losing a job, missing a flight, not making a particular deal, or ending a relationship – was a real blessing in disguise, a life lesson gift that we are truly grateful for.
So I got to thinking: how much time and opportunity is lost in the gap between WTF and OMG? What if we could compress that time, you know, get the ego to take a chill pill and to minimize the recovery time?
Here’s what I found really works and what it’s based on. It seems that the autonomic nervous system holds onto previous trauma which is part of just about every human life. Because the trauma is stored in our body, our trigger is shorter when confronted with WTF situations and we have a greater tendency to automatically lurch into negative emotions. All this happens reflexively, without thinking.
With regard to any challenge that we face today, we must, indeed, educate our way out of it. We must learn what is causing the challenge, what contributes to it, what it affects, and the implications of not taking action and getting to work. It’s the Face It, Follow It, Fix It model from my book, Illuminate: Harnessing the Positive Power of Negative Thinking.
One technique I came across, quite serendipitously, involves resetting the autonomic nervous system so that the stimulus of the WTF event is not exacerbated by the nervous system. Essentially, we end up with less tendency to overreact; thus, we can take a more objective view of the situation, during or shortly after the triggering event. I was directed to videos on YouTube to try the simple exercises, and it has been life changing, specifically with dealing with these hurdles in life.
If this strikes a note of reason and creates interest and desire to be able to more easily accept and assimilate life lessons, then I strongly suggest that you view these simple exercises on YouTube. I took the bait from a colleague and I’m glad that I did, because my trigger is so much less prone to get pushed, and I’m therefore able to deal much more effectively with the slings and arrows, roadblocks and obstacles, badass boulders of bullpoop and culture abuse that we confront on a daily basis. For me, it was a game changer. Try it. It’s free, simple and easy. Here’s the link: http://youtu.be/27VgK0LrR3Q
David M. Corbin, keynote speaker, business adviser, president of private and public corporations, inventor, mentor, former psychotherapist, and pretty good guy, provides practical, highly relevant speeches coupled with entertaining and sometimes side-splitting stories. His books, keynotes, and trainings are about systems that foster peace of mind and productivity through personal and professional growth and development, offering models for identifying values and mission, and give procedures and processes for bringing them to life. http://davidcorbin.com/
This article is reprinted from Issue #9 of Nonprofit Performance Magazine. Subscribe today so that you won’t miss other actionable articles that will help you run your nonprofit organization with less pain and more gain!
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