Special Note: If you want to hear how much my voice has changed since I got out of puberty and how gracefully I have aged go to http://tvwebcity.tv/index.php?chanID=9. Select the Joe Slash video presentation on Strengthening the Family and you will see me open the program.
“Life is a series of experiences, each of which makes us bigger, even though it is hard to realize this. For the world was built to develop character, and we must learn that the setbacks and grieves which we endure help us in our marching onward.”
The market slumped, I had about $5,000 in unplanned dental work not long ago, my wife’s car needed a little work we discovered today, about $2,000 worth and our furnace just failed with the loss of the main blower that has just recently gone out of warranty. Since these expenses have exceeded our contingency budget we had to draw from elsewhere. I think we are being tested but I am not sure I can stand much more character building. However if this is all there is, we’ll survive, move on, and thank our lucky stars that generally we are far better off than we might otherwise be. I sometimes get criticized because I don’t get angry or too upset when things don’t go my way, thankfully I learned a long time ago that it does absolutely no good to agonize over that which we cannot control.
In realty every problem we face and overcome prepares us to handle the obstacles that we encounter along the way as we live out our lives. It is when we understand that the world does not end whenever something goes wrong and that it is easier to pick ourselves up and move on than it is to stop and cry over our misfortune that our lives become not only more tolerable but also more fruitful.
Here is something I got recently from Gretchen Rubin that can help when things are not all we want them to be:
When we’re faced with serious setbacks, psychological mechanisms kick in to help us see positive aspects in the situation. I’ve been struck by how often people – especially those directly affected — search for opportunities for “post-traumatic growth.”
“This is really showing us what matters,” said one friend. “We have a beautiful family, we have our health, this isn’t a catastrophe.” Someone else said, “It’s been amazing to get so many emails and calls from people who are checking to see how I’m doing – I realize how many friends I have.”
People also use the downward-comparison strategy; they find a way to be grateful by realizing how much worse their situation could be. “We almost moved to Hong Kong, we’re so lucky we didn’t do that.”
People are also taking time to do ordinary, pleasurable things that help give them a sense of normalcy and relief. When I was doing the research for my biography, Forty Ways to Look at JFK , I remember reading a story that an advisor told – I may not have the details right, but as I recall: When this advisor walked into the West Wing during the Cuban missile crisis, he heard Kennedy speaking in a low voice. He assumed that JFK was meeting with someone about the crisis, but then he saw that Kennedy was sitting with his young daughter Caroline in his lap and was reading her a story. The advisor realized that this was one of the ways that Kennedy was staying cool – giving himself breaks from the tension by taking moments with his family.
Other people comfort themselves by reminding themselves to take the long view. “I just keep telling myself, a year from now, this will all be over,” said a friend. “In ten years, it will just be a distant memory.”
This isn’t to say that it’s not appropriate for people to feel unhappy or depressed under certain circumstances. It’s normal and often even helpful to experience negative emotions. But finding ways to make yourself feel better, or to contain the negative emotions to one part of your existence, can make it easier to bear a difficult time. All these coping mechanisms help people deal with an unhappy event.
Anytime you suffer a setback or disappointment, put your head down and plow ahead.
Murphy’s Law For Frequent Flyers
1. No flight ever leaves on time unless you are running late and need the delay to make the flight.
2. If you are running late for a flight, it will depart from the farthest gate within the terminal.
3. If you arrive very early for a flight, it inevitably will be delayed.
4. Flights never leave from Gate #1 at any terminal in the world.
5. If you must work on your flight, you will experience turbulence as soon as you touch pen to paper.
6. If you are assigned a middle seat, you can determine who has the seats on the aisle and the window while you are still in the boarding area. Just look for the two largest passengers.
7. Only passengers seated in window seats ever have to get up to go to the lavatory.
8. The crying baby on board your flight is always seated next to you.
9. The best-looking person on your flight is never seated next to you.
10. The less carry-on luggage space available on an aircraft, the more carry-on luggage passengers will bring aboard.
In good times and bad, we all need friends who will pray for us, listen to us and lend a comforting hand and an understanding ear when needed.
Darling," said the young man to his new bride. "Now that we are married, do you think you will be able to live on my modest income?"
"Of course, dearest, no trouble," she answered. "But what will you live on?"
Never argue with a woman when she’s tired. Or rested.
Driving home from church one Sunday, the father turned the radio to a country and western station.
"How can you stand that stuff?" complained his 16-year-old son. "It’s all about lonesome cowboys, gunfights, bar rooms and broken hearts."
Knowing his son preferred more modern music, the dad asked, "Well, what’s your music about?"
"That’s the beauty of it," the son said. "You just don’t know!"
Shared joy is a double joy. Shared sorrow is half sorrow.
She said: Not quite grasping the sanctity of "Monday Night Football," I plunked myself next to my new husband one Monday night to chat. He was distracted by the action on TV and after being shushed a few times, I gave him "the look."
Immediately contrite, he picked up the remote.
"I’m sorry, honey," he apologized. "I’m being rude. You go ahead and talk. I’ll just turn up the volume."
If ignorance is bliss, why aren’t more people happy?
Barbara is appearing on "Who Wants To Be A Millionaire. "
Regis: "Barbara, you’ve done very well so far – $500,000 and one lifeline left — phone a friend. The next question will give you the first ever million dollars if you get it right … but if you get it wrong you will drop back to $32,000 — are you ready?"
Barbara: "Sure, I’ll have a go."
Regis: "Which of the following birds does not build it’s own nest? Is it……..
"Remember, Barbara, its worth 1 million dollars."
Barbara: "Oh, gees, that’s simple…..Its a cuckoo.
Regis: "You’re sure? You can to stick on $500,000 or play on for the million."
Barbara: "I want to play, I’ll go with C – Cuckoo."
Regis: "Is that your final answer?"
Barbara: "It is."
Regis: "Are you confident?"
Barbara: "Absolutely! "
Regis: "Barbara…. .you had $500,000 and you said C – Cuckoo.
Well….you’ re right! – You have just won ONE MILLION DOLLARS. Here is your check. You have been a great contestant and a real gambler. Audience please! Put your hands together for Barbara.
That night Barbara calls around to Carol and brings her down to a local bar for a celebration drink. As they are sipping their champagne, Carol turns to Barbara and asks, "Tell me, how in God’s name did you know that it was the cuckoo that does not build its own nest?"
"Get real!" Barbara replies, "Everybody knows that cuckoos live in clocks."
When you look at yourself from a universal standpoint, something inside always reminds or informs you that there are bigger and better things to worry about.
Stay well, do good work, and have fun.
Indianapolis, Indiana, USA
Management is not responsible for duplicates from previous dailies.
The editor is somewhat senile.