Walking in the halls of a highschool one day fetching a client from their classroom, I noticed as sign on a student’s locker that read — If something bad happens to you, yell out ‘plot twist!’ and move on in a new direction.”
I’m not sure I’ve ever read something as awesome as that sentence ever since. It was always true in my opinion, but now it is EXTREMELY relevant given our current COVID issues. I find it to be so relevant because it is so insanely true. As reality therapy teaches, a person may not be able to choose what happens to them in life, but they can ALWAYS choose how they are going to react.
Today’s world was already challenging enough, then the COVID 19 pandemic broke out, stifling the economy and forcing most of us to stay at home. To help keep morale up and the mental wellness strong, finding the silver linings in day to day activities cannot be stressed enough.
I had a first hand lesson the importance of silving linings just the other day when I was out pressure washing my driveway. As I was cleaning a few years worth muck and grime off, I noticed all these little divots caused by erosion. I became aware of massive leaf stains that would not come off, but only lighten… slightly. I discovered a few different hair line cracks that are only going to speed up the timetable on having to redo some of the concrete pads.
Then it hit me as I grumbled and mumbled to myself….
I had a choice.
I could look at that driveway’s divots, stains and cracks as something negative. OR… Or I could think of each divot and each stain as part of my driveway’s story. I could reflect on every crack, every little blemish, as a little piece of my family’s story over the last five years.
Thinking of it like that… Thinking of it in that fashion allowed me to shift my perspective, and reframe my beliefs. Instead of spending my day cleaning my driveway wallowing in its imperfections, I spent the day cherishing the days spent walking down the driveway with my girls to the bus stop. I especially laughed at remembering the days when my silly pug dog refused to go to the bus stop because of rain and stopped dead in her tracks next to the passenger door. I membered slipping on ice and skating to my car. I relished in the dance parties I have while I shovel snow each winter.
Shifting a person’s perspective can be an integral part of self exploration and growth, especially in finding ways to look past the forest and notice all the trees in life. Referring back to reality therapy, and it’s vehicle of delivery choice theory, it is our perception lens that can cause us the most distress in life. If we can take the time to look at things from different perspectives… If we find those silver linings, we can rearrange this crazy mixed up world into something positive and drenched with love. I go to far as to suggest that silvering linings slowly because soul saving devices that keep the cognitive distortions at bay.
So thus I challenge all of you to find the silver linings in your life. Be grateful and always express gratitude recklessly. I live a blessed life, and every time I even start to complain, I take a deep breath so I can search for those silving linings.
I suggest you try it too and see if it uplifts your mood at all. If I was a betting man, I’d bet on the side of silver linings serving to provide much needed mental sanity.
- Ryan Delaney
Enjoy the day!
They are there. I promise. Find yours!