Back when my cousin A was a toddler (which was a long time ago, she's in medical school now), she and her sister were visiting my family for the summer.  The house we were staying at had a pool, and next to it, a little water slide.  The two girls were playing with another toddler, and the three would line up to use the slide.  A, being the youngest, always seemed to wind up being last in line.  

This really pissed her off.

She cried, stomped her feet, and made a big ruckus about it.  I helped her out though.  I suggested that when it was her turn, that instead of going right down the slide, she wait for the other two girls to line up behind her, and then she would be first.

She did just that, and felt so happy.  Then they all started to do it, and all got to be first.


As a life coach I tell my clients about this sort of thing all the time.  The fancy name for it is a paradigm shift.  You mentally shift gears to see things in the way which is most useful to you.  It's not a lie, it's the choice to see things in a different, yet also valid way.

I experience them myself all the time, and can often mindfully encourage them.  Just this morning I got out of the house in time to make one of the few holiday schedule trains running today.  On my way there, I got stuck behind a truck going very slowly.  

At first, I was very agitated.  But then I realized that I didn't have to be.  I followed behind the truck until I could safely change lanes, and then drove to the station at the speed limit.  I knew that if I missed the train, the traffic would be easy anyhow, because it had been yesterday.  If I had to take the car, then this was just a few minute detour to the station. 

As it turns out, I made it in time.  But I was also calm, peaceful, and unhurried as I did so.  Changing gears mentally helped me get where I needed to go, without undue suffering. 

I'm grateful I know how to do this, and can practice it.

AuthorMako Allen
Categories365 Gratitude