Highlights

Blend

{A shot I took when I stepped outside during a rather chaotic day and was greeted by something magical.}

Whew! What a week it’s been…and a lesson, I suppose. By nature, I have a pretty worry-some personality. In other words, there are times when it feels like everything just comes all at once or goes wrong to the point where I start stressing out. Unfortunately, my first reaction is to sit and worry, particularly when whatever is giving me cause for concern is an area that’s completely out of my control. And since 95% of things that stress us out are likely out of our control, this is a bit of a character flaw in me that I’ve dealt with my whole life. The great thing is that I’m not in denial about it, and even better, I consciously understand it’s completely unhelpful. In fact, I catch myself doing it and have an internal dialogue/war in my head that it goes something like this:

(Internal Dialogue)

Will this work out? What if something goes wrong? What am I going to do?

Stop it, Candice, you’re just stressing yourself out! 

I know. But, really what am I going to do?

Worrying gets you nowhere. Remember that saying that “99% of the things you worry about never happen anyway?” 

I know, I know…but…..what if…

CHILL OUT!

The point is that I always divert to worse case scenario whenever something goes wrong. It’s my defense mechanism: to always prepare myself for the worst. The disappointment is much less harsh if I was expecting it anyway, right? The caveat is that it seems my worry-wart nature has been on steroids over the last few weeks and it’s likely the cause for why I’m just so exhausted and SO looking forward to this particular holiday vacation.

December has been a roller-coaster month: being sick, then on antibiotics, stressing over finances, dealing with a complex project at work, going back and forth with my neighbor who hit my parked car, and just a general lack of energy that comes year-end when stress seems to be more prevalent than any other season.

Though, I have to say I’m proud of myself. Despite all of this, it didn’t completely kill my Christmas cheer. Haha! And with all of this internal dialogue running through my head, I always try to keep things in perspective and focus on the good and be grateful, even when I’m preparing for the bad. That goes something like this:

(Internal Dialogue)

I’m grateful that I have health insurance when I’m sick and can see a doctor; I have a roof over my head and food in my house – I have everything I need.

I’m grateful that I have a job that is challenging me to do and be better; and while no, I’m not happy that my neighbor hit my car, I’m grateful she left me a note and gave me a check for the damages.

The funny thing about this week, that was chocked full of situations that were ultimately outside of my immediate control, that I then spent way too much time obsessing about away, naturally worked themselves out or somehow fell into place with a little patience. Of course, those areas where I could control, I did my best to make sure I was on top of things. There really is something to the commonly shared saying that “the only thing you can control is you and how you choose to react to any given situation.”

So if I’m aware of all of this, why did (and do) I still fall into such behavioral patterns?

Needless to say that as I begin my much-needed winter vacation today, I’m making it a point to really work on being present and enjoying the spirit of the holiday season. It really is a unique time of year that finds me with more time on my hands to do and be around the things I truly enjoy. I cannot say I won’t worry about x,  y, or z; but I can say that I will make an attempt to listen more to the voice of reason during that internal dialogue/war going on in my head.

I made it! Let the holiday vacation begin.

Have a great weekend!

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