This is going to sound ridiculously simple, but I’ve been working on a theory for attitude management. For real.
I’m a strong personality with a multitude of ideas on most topics. (You can relate, right? I see you smiling! Or are you smiling because you know me and you know it’s true? Well, either way … ) These are good qualities that can also cause me a lot of stress. Once I figured out why, managing my emotions became a lot easier.
What I realized was that I have a tendency to believe I have more choices in any given situation than I truly have.
Most of the time, these are my choices:
Most of the time, I can’t change the circumstances or the people. I can only change my attitude toward these things/people and so my choices are suddenly limited to two: go through it with a bad attitude or go through it with a good attitude.
My stress comes when I spend time plotting my escape or how I’m going to re-imagine the system or what an improvement it would be if I was in charge. And yet most of the time, these are not genuine options, and so I spend time fretting or fuming for no positive gain.
Sometimes you CAN change a situation, so maybe you should, but most of the time, we fuss about things we can’t change.
Analyze the situation. This might include asking questions such as: Who is in charge? Is it worth my time to object or disagree? Would my objections likely bring any change to the situation? If getting out meant missing out, would it be worth it?
Now, how many choices do you REALLY have? If you realize it is something you have to doÂ – maybe it’s a decision passed down at work or a sick loved one or a poorly planned family vacation – then you know you have to find some way to get through it.
Look at the visual examples above.
Make your choice.
What specific examples come to mind where this would be useful?