A Deep Breath for Perspective

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By: Jenn Kovalski

There are a lot of things in our life that are out of our control. However, we can control how we react and treat others. We can also control our perspective. Most of us are very lucky and have a lot to be grateful for. You never know what people are going through and a little patience, gratitude and kindness really do go a long way. I for one, am always appreciative when someone extends a kind gesture my way.

Be thankful if you have and are in good health. A lot can go wrong in one’s day or week, but at the end of it if you are healthy, be eternally grateful because there are a lot of people that have to fight to wake up tomorrow. An acquaintance of mine has stage 4 cancer. She was told she will have to be on chemotherapy for the rest of her life and has a dim prognosis. She is 35 years old and has two young children. She wakes up every day praying she will hear good news from a doctor because she wants to live. So when my coffee order got messed up the other day and I was upset, is it actually that terrible that I had to go back in and ask them for a new one? Not really, because if that was one of my bigger concerns for the day, I am pretty lucky.

When I am driving, I am generally in a constant state of awe. All of the other drivers appear to be morons and have no idea how to operate a motor vehicle on our established roads. So the other day, when someone in front of me was driving a cool 20 MPH under the speed limit for no apparent reason, and constantly putting their blinkers on and then not turning. Instead of honking, flailing and getting myself worked up- I took a deep breath and decided to just let it go. Obviously this driver didn’t really know where they were going. We have all been there, lost in an unfamiliar area and likely running late to wherever we were supposed to be- it’s stressful, and doesn’t help when the driver behind you is honking and flipping you the bird. So I forced myself to be patient and remain calm and eventually this person pulled into a nursing home, probably to visit a loved one.

This article isn’t a lecture, no one is perfect, and I certainly am not. But maybe in this crazy world where people fly off the handle at other drivers, online, are upset at election results…or whatever, we need to focus a little more on controlling what we can such as our own behavior. Most of us can afford to be a little more helpful, patient, and remember that we have it pretty good at the end of the day. There are a lot of people that would give anything to have the ‘problems’ that we think we have such as a wrong coffee, or a slow poke in front of us.