“Success and happiness are not matters of chance but choice.” – Zig Ziglar
As I walked past the Customer Service Representative’s desk I heard her exclaim, “that call just wrecked my whole day.” Think about that for a minute. We’ll come back to it.
A few years ago I was lucky enough to hear motivational speaker/writer Zig Ziglar give a presentation. Zig was a firm believer that we choose our own moods. If you told him that another person or situation put you in a bad mood he wouldn’t believe it.
Zig said to the group, “Who here has had someone swerve in front of them and cut them off on the way to work?” Everyone raised their hands. “All right, for how many of you, did this situation completely ruin your day and put you in a horrible mood?” Most of the audience raised their hands. Zig continued, “Well, how about this; do you think that you could give yourself just 30 minutes to be mad about it, then enjoy the rest of the day?”
We all considered his words, and little light bulbs began appearing above heads all across the auditorium. Of course! What a great plan! Instead of being mad for an entire day, we’d just be upset for a half an hour. We all nodded, yes, we could do that.
Then Zig brought it home. “If you can make the conscious decision to be upset for just a half an hour, instead choose to not be upset at all. Why lose that 30 minutes? Why let the actions of some person you don’t even know completely control your mood and the outcome of your day?”
I think about that question now, not just when someone cuts me off on 85-S, but whenever I find myself in a bad mood. What led me to the mood? Am I letting the actions of another person dictate the outcome of my day? And if so, why am I giving someone else that power?
Choose to be happy.