Last week, I posted a blog post titled, “#Losing.” It was about how terrible things were going in my work life, how stressful things were for Chris at his job, and about how until God somehow changed my circumstances, my blogging schedule was going to be a bit erratic.
That night around 2:00am, I woke up and padded downstairs in my pajamas and socks and reread the post.
Yep. It was just as I had suspected. A mindless rant.
Don’t get me wrong. Mindless rants are important and necessary in life, and I wouldn’t be human if I never had one. In fact, the mindless rant wasn’t what had woken me up in the middle of the night. What woke me up was the sudden realization that if I just let it stay a mindless rant and never actually did anything about it, then I would become a mindless person.
A mindless rant is one thing. A mindless person is another.
To me, a mindless person is someone who just sits there and waits. They wait on opportunities to come to them. They wait on people to treat them better. They wait on success to find them. They wait and they wait and they wait because they are too mindless to do anything about it.
I woke up in the middle of the night because I know that I am not a mindless person. I am an active person. I take action when I can. I pray. I think. I plan. I move ahead. And, every now and then, I mindlessly rant. But there’s nothing wrong with that, as long as I pick myself up and move ahead afterwards.
I’ve been thinking about my dad lately. I wish he were here for me to talk to about all these things going on in my life right now. The funny thing is, though, I know exactly what he would say. He would tell me to buck up. He’d tell me to pick myself up. He’d tell me to stop wallowing and do something. And then he’d hug me and tell me that he knew I could handle this. Dad was a doer. He rarely ever wallowed or even complained (unless complaining would drive my mom nuts, and then he’d complain about something all day long just to get her going…). He didn’t believe in feeling sorry for yourself or in excuses. He just did what needed to be done, and he expected others to live by that same principle. I think I’m a lot like him in that sense. And he would have hated the post last week. He would have called me the next day and said, “You’re having a tough time, huh? Got lots on your plate? Well, that’s GOOD! Get it done! Quit making excuses!”
I ended up taking down that post. Not because I’m afraid to share my mindless rants (see the rest of this blog, if you don’t believe me…) but because I’m done with that rant. It’s time to stop making excuses and start making changes now. Bloom where you’re planted, and all that jazz.
This weekend I rested and this morning I woke up ready to start fresh. I read my Bible and prayed for things to be taken out of my hands, and for me to be willing to let go of my own expectations. And you know what? I had a great day at work. I’m certainly not saying that because I watched football this weekend and said a prayer, life became roses and sunshine. That’s not exactly how it works. But I am saying that I watched football and said a prayer and my outlook became roses and sunshine. Same problems. Same stresses. Same circumstances. But I changed the only thing I have control over – my attitude.
Mindless people have terrible attitudes. They have attitudes of defeat and frustration and stress because they aren’t willing to work hard enough enough to overcome them. But people who take action? People who see circumstances they don’t like and decide to change them? Those people have attitudes of enthusiasm and optimism and joy.
And those sound like much better options to me.