I’m working super hard on emotional regulation at the moment (aka holding my shit together in healthy ways – more about that in my upcoming tour). And so I wanted to share with you just a little reframe that’s helping me right now: I get to or I have to?
Oh but first you need to know this: After 17 years on antidepressants, I’ve stopped taking them recently. I don’t think I’m living with depression anymore. I’m a very different human than I was for many of those 17 years. But OMG you guys everything is so feely! I am feeling EVERYTHING.
And so that’s where this story starts
I had to pop down the road to get my car serviced, which would have been fine, except #roadworks means the 10-minute drive was more like 45mins. And it was fucking freezing. Who knew Rotorua has such heavy frosts in Autumn?
I would have liked to be rugged up in my office getting shit done. But instead, I had to go out in the icy morning to sit in traffic for ever. If there’s anything that triggers me, feeling like precious time is being wasted is one of those things.
So I’m in the car, shivering, waiting for it to warm up, and watching the cars creeping along. Getting grumpier by the second. I waited for someone to let me into the line of traffic, and I got more and more critical of the people who were, well, being irritatingly human while they drove. Following too close. Not moving fast enough. Not watching what’s happening. Breathing. You know, shit like that.
And I could feel my shoulders getting more and more tense. And I could feel the pressure building up at the base of my skull. And I could feel my breathing was shallow.
So I took a deep breath. Dropped my shoulders. Loosened my neck. Lifted my eyes, and breathed.
- The sun was shining.
- The sky was clear.
- The car was warming up.
- I had a coffee in my hand.
- I had a podcast on.
And I thought: How good is my life? I get to take this morning slowly and make sure my car stays reliable and safe. I get to feel the sunshine and have the heater blowing on my toes. I get sweet hot milky coffee. I’m comfortable. I’m safe. Life is good.
It’s a simple reframe from I HAVE TO, to I GET TO
I have to sit in traffic becomes I get to have a relaxed morning and take things slow. I get to enjoy my coffee and breathe and listen to a podcast.
I felt much less stabby.
Strange how that happens!
I find myself doing this pretty often.
- I have to bring in firewood becomes I get to use my body and keep it strong by carrying firewood.
- I have to catch a plane becomes I get to have a break from my everyday responsibilities.
- I have to join a zoom meeting becomes I get to spend some time with cool people!
- Even if I’m sick… I have to stay in bed becomes I get to rest and recover.
That’s it. Just one little reframe.
I’d love to hear yours.
(And PS – being stabby is bad. Don’t do that. Maybe buy yourself some tickets to my Get Your Shit Sorted tour with Alicia McKay and Lance Burdett to learn how.)
Want to know more? Haven’t really got to know me yet? Weird, but ok.
And if you wanna hang out soon?