Default Setting

There’s a whole bunch of snow falling in Sullivan! It began yesterday afternoon, took a break during the overnight and restarted this morning.

Looking outside, one could say, “Oh, my. This is going to change my plans AND I’m going to have to shovel it. Crap!”

Or, one could say, “Oh, my. This is a magical place and it’s absolutely gorgeous when it turns into a Winter Wonderland. Wow!”

Both of the above statements are positions I’ve held while looking at the snow. I’ve been the realistic curmudgeon and the rose-colored glass wearer, too. I’ve seen the glass half-empty and half-full, the fear and the love, the dark and the light. My mind, like yours, has what I sometimes call a “prism”, a glass we look through that makes everything look (and feel) different when we turn it in our hands.

Of course, I’m not just talking about. the weather, though that’s something that most of us can relate to. Is rain bad? Is a 90-degree day good? It depends on how you hold the prism.

Or, it’s about our Default Settings? I believe that there is a natural place where my mind rests, a way of thinking about things that is on the spectrum between “Oh Crap!” and “Oh Yeah!”

Computers, cars and cell phones have default settings. Sometimes we can change them, but most people leave them be. Most of us are not technological tinkerers. We just want our machines to work!

I have been tinkering with my brain for the last twenty years. Sometimes, I think that I understand myself, but lately, my curiosity, age and the changes we’ve made have taken me well beyond my limits. I find myself rapidly shifting between the extremes of love and fear, dark and light. I see the snow as both a problem and a wonder, but truth be told – mostly a problem.

My default setting, you see, is set to “victim mode.” I have great moments of joy, but I seem to return to a lower self-opinion and outlook that tells me, “Scott – your prism is locked on a dark setting.”

Fortunately, at this moment, the one that brought me to the computer to write it down, I feel like I understand what’s happening inside of my head. It hasn’t gone away or changed, yet, but it will once I shift the prism. Here. I’ll do it now.

Breathing in I see that I am a whole person. I have the power inside of me to be strong and sure like an oak, but the reality is that life’s stiff winds can blow anyone down. Instead, then, I will see myself as flexible like a willow tree. I will allow and accept that the currents of the wind are going to come and that I can move with them if I remain curious and open. I forgive myself for the times when I tried to buffet the winds, to deny the strength of the Universe and chose to fight, instead. This is a natural, fearful reaction to changes and fighting kept my ancestors alive. At this moment, though, what’s called for is a different type of strength. I need to know that “this, too, shall pass” is wise and so is “have the courage. change what you can” is, too. Serenity is possible. One day at a time.

May you be blessed with it, too.

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