Life delivers a mix of major and minor setbacks through the course of our journey. For most people, major setbacks happen once every few years while minor setbacks happen all the time.
Major setbacks typically deal with the mortality of people dear to us, our health or difficulties in our relationships. For these kinds of setbacks, I think the fundamental choice we have on our hands is akin to the line from Timon in “The Lion King” – “You can either run from it… or learn from it.”
But, this post isn’t about major setbacks.
It is about the many minor setbacks we deal with as part of our day-to-day. As I grow in my ability to separate stimulus and response and keep things in perspective, I realize there something incredibly powerful when you realize that you can choose to not just deal with setbacks but to have fun with them.
I had a minor setback recently when I found myself stuck for a few hours. After a night of sleep, I went through the following internal dialog –
“Okay, it is what it is. I can’t change the situation. It sucks.” (acceptance)
“But, in the big scheme of things, it isn’t that bad and could be much worse. In fact, there are many positives.” (perspective)
“Now, I’m going to have fun with it.” (response)
And, have fun with it I did.
For many years, I didn’t really understand the concept of “keeping good humor.” But, with a bit of perspective, I’ve realized that good humor isn’t far away. And, where there’s perspective and humor, there’s the ability to choose to have fun with it.
And, so we should.