Some days it seems like life catches up with you. There are the days where everything that has been troubling you comes to the forefront. Today has been one of those days.
Last night I went to sleep with the mindset that tomorrow was going to be all about “ME”. I didn’t have to go to work, and I didn’t have any meetings, so my whole day was wide open. Like most people, my life has been taken hostage by the hours of work and extracurricular commitments that have come to take up most of my time. Most days seem like a slog, filled with “I have to’s” and “after this I’ve gotta do that”. It really builds up to the point where you need a day off. So needless to say, I was looking forward to a relaxing, stress free day. But how did my day actually start? I walk upstairs after my morning shower, and I am greeted by Dave, my mom’s hubby. He immediately cockblocks my whole day by saying “You’re mom could really use your help today moving boxes.” Immediate bummer. Who was he to lay this heavy burden on me!? Did he not realize it was my day off? Time that I rightfully deserved after tons of hard work? Does he not know how much I need a day off!? I may have started my day with this arrogant attitude, but luckily I end it with a much different one. Later in the day I called up my good friend Aaron, and invited him over to go tobogganing. I started my morning with the idea that I was going to hang out and have a good time, so that’s what I was going to do no matter what anyone said.
After hitting the slopes for about an hour, we decided to head back to my house and shoot some pool. Before we started I headed upstairs for a drink, and my brother tells me how mad my mom is that I didn’t help her. In his mind he sees me as the bad guy because he’s been moving most of the stuff. In my mind he’s unemployed and should be doing more work because he has the time and I don’t. But this is the problem. We often look to someone else to solve the problem, but how often do we actually offer a willing hand ourselves. The unfortunate thing is that this “have to” attitude can be flipped to be a “I want to” attitude and have amazing results. If you live a life of resentful commitment then how can you expect to be happy? What I often fail to realize is how important a positive attitude is. If you let your commitments become you, they become how you feel inside; committed. But if we live with a positive attitude centered around compassion and lending a hand then it will rub off onto the people around us and it will create deeper connections and happier memories. So why not move towards a more proactive and positive attitude?
I know that if my siblings and I adopted the “I want to help” mindset that this move would have been done so long ago, and this stress would not exist today. If we all decided to start caring more about each others lives then we would be so much closer, and life at home would be so much happier. So later in the basement I voiced my stress to Aaron. This discussion snowballed into a whole deep conversation about balancing work and personal life. We talked about how much do we need in order to be happy, and we discussed what really adds value to life. For me it’s all about the people and connecting deeply; just like I did with Aaron yesterday. So after he left for the day, I went back upstairs with a different attitude. I was ready to give what I could, and I gave my mom a hug and asked her what could I do to help. I ended up moving boxes and setting aside time in the week to help clean the old house. It felt good to make her happy, and I want to do what I can to continue doing so. If I want things to change for the better then I have to start today. I need to remember to be really compassionate when it comes to the struggles of those around me. A hug and some kind words can go a long way to making someone’s problems seem less difficult then they actually are. Instead of being wrapped up in my own life I need to be even more present in the lives of others. I need to be excited to connect with other people! I actually think that we all need moments where we open up ourselves to others, and show them that we are in fact a human being, and not simply a task achieving roboman. Compassion builds as we each do something nice for one another, and the end result can be something great.
With much love I say adieu,