If you didn’t know, I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia in September of 2012 which involves chronic pain, fatigue, nasty headaches and a whole other long list of symptoms. Good news is that it won’t kill me, bad news is that it’s probably not going away.
For some reason this past week has been a particularly brutal week as far as pain goes and it’s been difficult to even got out of bed at times. It also happens to be my son’s first week of kindergarten, my daughter is starting her Junior year in High School and about to get her driver’s license and my one year old is, well… being a one year old.
The problem with all that is that life is going to continue to go on, parent-teacher meetings still need to happen, last minute school shopping lists are being handed out by teachers, 1 TKD meetings are still scheduled, servers have gone down and dealing with Dish Network recently has become a pain in the ass! Regardless of how I feel, life is going to continue to go on.
You may not have fibro, but you have whatever you are dealing with in your life… your own set of circumstances.
And you have a choice. A choice of how you are going to deal with what life throws your way.
You always have the ability to choose how you are going to act in any situation regardless of the circumstances.
We spend most of our day reacting to things that happen to us and around us. The key word here is REACTING. When you are stuck in traffic, you have a reaction. When you get cut off while driving, you have a reaction. When you get a flat tire you have a reaction. When you find a hundred dollar bill on the sidewalk, you have a reaction. When your kids clean their room without being told, you have a reaction. When a family member dies, you have a reaction.
And that reaction you have is automatic. You don’t have to think about it. Your brain has taken care of that for you.
You don’t say to yourself, “Self, I think the best thing I can do in this moment is to honk my horn and viciously yell at this driver in front of me.” Or say to yourself, “Self, I think being excited would be appropriate for finding a hundred dollar bill in this old pair of jeans.” That doesn’t happen. You just react.
Even though there will always be an automatic reaction, you still have the ability to choose how to act. Beyond the initial reaction, you have everything to say about what’s happening. You could actually get cut off while driving and think, “I wonder if he accidentally didn’t see me or if he is in a hurry for some reason.” You could get a flat tire and think, “This is a great opportunity for me to practice using a car jack!”
The point is, as much as you blame your circumstances for why your life is the way it is, why your school is the way that it is, in reality, your circumstances have no power to dictate how you think, feel or act. You are not at the effect of your circumstances. How you think, feel and act with regard to any situation is your choice, and yours alone.
About the Author:
Mr. Karstadt is the founder of 1 TKD Consulting and owns the longest running ITF Taekwon-Do school in Arizona, Karstadt Taekwon-Do in Phoenix, AZ with his father Master David Karstadt. He has been training since 1984, earned his Black Belt at the age of 8 and is currently an internationally renown intstructor teaching the culture, discipline, leadership and business skills of Taekwon-Do in classes and seminars to Instructors around the world. He has been a member of eight U.S. Taekwon-Do Teams and has traveled to 14 different countries competing in Taekwon-Do. He has won numerous medals at the World Championships and in international competition, most notably winning the 2004 World Championships in South Korea with two gold medals and the Men’s Team All Around Trophy. Mr. Karstadt currently resides in uptown Phoenix, Arizona with his wife and three children. Mr. Karstadt can be contacted by e-mail at email@example.com