Before I sat down to write this piece, I thought about it for awhile. I pondered, what IS the best advice I had ever been given? Now that I’m sitting here ready to put my thoughts out in the open and write this… I still don’t have it narrowed down to one best piece of advice. In fact, I have two. Hence the title. So, here it goes, my best two pieces of advice are: choosing discomfort over resentment and giving thanks, always.
If you’ve read my blogs before, you know that in my adult years, I struggle with anxiety. It is one of the things that I’ve tried to combat, but still live with each day. I talked to a counselor who suggested the book, “The Power of Vulnerability”, by Brene Brown. After purchasing on AudioBooks, I’ve listened to it through, three times. Brene goes into depth about setting boundaries and choosing just a few minutes of discomfort over a lifetime of resentment.
For example: A friend asks you to a last minute dinner party. When speaking to the friend, you ask if there is anything you can bring, to which they respond, homemade mashed potatoes, enough to feed 15 people. You think: I have two days before the dinner party and the night prior to the dinner party I have a much needed night out with some gal pals. I’ve been looking forward to this night out with the girls for nearly a month. You know in your right mind, there is no way you’re going to be able to go to dinner with friends, work the next day, come home and peel 10+ pounds of potatoes for everyone before the party. So you speak up: “I’ve got a full plate, is there anything else I can bring, because I don’t have much time to prepare?”
Boom. Problem solved. Yes, you may feel awkward because you turned the host down about a huge helping of mashed potatoes, but it resulted in a few minutes of discomfort vs. the opposite of you running around like a chicken with its head cut off, trying to accomplish all the things, while muttering under your breath about the audacity of your friend/host asking you to bring homemade mashed potatoes for 15. Hahaha, I’ve been there! I’ve done this time and again and now, I try to catch myself in the act and set those boundaries, because in the long run, it helps me to not feel crazy.
My second piece of advice is to always give thanks. I need to practice this more than I should because when I do, I feel like a different person. “Thank you for, Lord, for letting me wake up to see another day.” “Thank you for allowing me to breathe and walk and allowing the sun to shine.” “Even though that hurt really bad, thank you for helping me learn how to not treat others.”
So there you have it, my two best pieces of advice. I try to use them both as a personal mantra and I’ll admit, that sometimes I fail. Sometimes I unwittingly choose resentment over discomfort. Sometimes I wake up and I’m not grateful. I’m grumpy because I didn’t get an answer to prayer, it’s raining, I’ve just gotten bad news, or whatever else can happen. We’re HUMAN, folks. That’s the best part of us. There is no perfect way to live our lives, but if I were to share the two most important advices from me to you, these two would be it. Do you have any pieces of advice you’d share? And, if you get a moment, check out Brene Brown, she’s truly one of the greats!