“Look at that thug” He motioned to his wife from the driver’s side. The thug in question was walking down Main Street. He had 2 children following along side him. He had shorts and a tank top. He was covered in tattoos, had a thick beard, and crisp shaved head.
His wife looked to where he pointed, squinted her eyes and then exclaimed “that’s not a thug, that’s Dr Park!”
Our realities are our perception. To see something, is to make it so. How we view the world, becomes how the world is.
Two men lose their jobs. The first man worries that he will be destitute and living on the street if he doesn’t find work soon. He is depressed because he had a “good” job and his sense of self-worth was tied to his occupation. The second man views this loss of a job as an opportunity. He now has the freedom to pursue something better. It may be difficult, but he knows it will be a valuable adventure, and he will come out the other side more resourceful and useful than ever. He finds a slight sense of joy and excitement.
I’m not trying to be an irrational idealist. Life can be difficult at times. I don’t want to take away from that. But, there are techniques to help us change our perception and move on. To find hope in darkness. To find growth from pain. To find birth from destruction.
This isn’t about seeing the “bright side” of things. This isn’t about optimism. Your emotions are your reality. And if you can control your emotions, then you can bend reality to your will.
Are you angry, hurt, fearful? Stop. Ask yourself “why?” Often, it will be your own thoughts and emotions that have betrayed you and no one else.
Set your mind on the things that make you happy and give you peace. Be content and grateful for what you have. Acknowledge negative thoughts and emotions for what they are, then dismiss them. Learn to be creative and see things from all angles. Look for solutions to your problems and take action.
Try to see another perspective. Imagine you are in a plane and looking down on all the tiny houses, the roads, the trees. They look so similar and so removed from your reality. From this height, insignificant things really are insignificant.
Refuse to accept the borders you have put around yourself. You are not just one thing. You are many things. You are free to grow, to experiment, to change.
But what do I know, I’m just living that thug life.