How often do you find yourself coming unglued because of situations you weren’t expecting? You know, things like misplaced car keys, kids missing the school bus, traffic, and a nagging headache.
Small events like the aforementioned can drive you crazy if you don’t put them in perspective. However, I have found that most of us – and I’m including myself – find it harder to deal with small inconveniences than bigger problems.
Two days ago, my Internet and email became inaccessible. No, it’s not the end of the world. I tried doing some of the things I recommend to clients, like taking a deep breath.
When my service provider, my initial contact was with a puppet who took me through the voice mail system. That process took at least five minutes, because the puppet must have heard Russian even though I was speaking English. The puppet finally said there was a five-minute wait to talk to a human. I was feeling a little riled, but I took another deep breath and kept waiting.
At long last, I heard a human voice. The gentleman asked me what the problem, was and I carefully explained it. He told me that the issue had been already reported, by a technician who was working on another problem.
I have a very active imagination, so I started think of possible reasons why my service wasn’t working. Could the problem have arisen because the technician disrupted my service while working on the other problem? Why didn’t they call me before I called them if they knew of my problem? I posed these questions and more to the real human, but he kept saying, “Oh, no, that’s not what happened.”
His only suggestion was that I schedule an appointment for a technician to come to the house to check things out. Unfortunately, no one was available to come for two days.
Being at the mercy of something I could not control, I found my stress level increasing along with my frustration.
The problem will eventually be fixed. What REALLY needs fixing is my need to control what’s going on no matter what the issue. I know many individuals who feel that same need.
I’ve gotten better over the years, but my inner Attila the Hun still rears its ugly head from time to time. It takes practice and patience to understand that life will always test our ability to tolerate unforeseen circumstances.
It boils down to not “sweating the small stuff.” After all, the “big stuff” might be just around the corner.