Our Jack Russell was watching the snow accumulation as it towered over her head. We got over 2 feet in 2 days. Finally, it stopped and yesterday the cleanup began. The day started out wonderfully. I began the day, as usual, with a period of prayer and meditation followed by a bowl of warm oatmeal with fresh blueberries. The sun was shining brightly and the sky was a brilliant blue. Yes, it was cold, but I was dressed for it. After spending about 3 hours clearing the front porch, steps, and sidewalk, it was time to focus on my car. While I was attempting to clear snow from the roof and finding it difficult, my mind flashed to my husband’s race car sitting safe, and oh so dry, in the garage. Suddenly, I was angry at having to clean off my car. The fact that it failed to start didn’t help matters any. I noticed my thoughts and realized I was really angry at myself. If I had asked him to move the race car over to make room for my vehicle, he would have done it. But I never asked. This didn’t help matters any; I was still upset. I just shifted the focus of my anger from him to me. So I took a few deep breaths and got into the moment. The sun was still shining and the sky was still blue. I began to appreciate the way the untouched snow sparkled in the sunlight. And I realized that this work was actually kind of fun as it gave me a reason to be outdoors on a beautiful winter’s day while getting some exercise to boot. As I checked in with my body I found I was Tired and Hungry, two of H.A.L.T.’s warning signs. I vowed to stop soon to rest and have a bite to eat. I finished cleaning off the car with an attitude of gratitude. Crisis averted! (Oh, and my husband jump started the car so it’s good to go!)
The negative thoughts in this story were present for only a few minutes. However, there was a time when I would have allowed continued negative thoughts to ruin my entire day. Thank goodness for recovery and increased awareness of how I can self-sabotage my day. But more importantly, once noticed, I can change both my attitude and my actions, utilizing my “inner connection” in times of stress and my recovery network or outside help for those more challenging situations.
“To be upset over what you don’t have is to waste what you do have.” —Ken S. Keyes, Jr.