Sometimes we have problems where perspective can cure most of the pain. Other times our problems might leave us despairing for good reason. For the first kind, though, when small things start to take a big place in your mind, here are a few reminders.
We humans have been around a very long time, and we just so happen to be living in arguably the best period. The common cold isn’t a widespread killer, clean water flows into our personal, climate-controlled shelter, and one of the most powerful computers in all of history is in the pockets of most Americans.
The fact you are even reading this means you’re literate and have access to the Internet, which basically contains an archive of everything we’ve learned as a species. You have the resources to learn virtually anything you could possibly dream of at your fingertips.
Let’s back up, though, to the actual probability that you are even you...
Without getting too birds-and-bees or Intro-To-Anatomy on you, let’s just say that you being you is a much lower probability than you winning the lottery. Lots of eggs, lots of sperm, endless combinations with countless factors affecting outcomes...but you are you, and there’s not a person in all of time that’s just like you.
For real. I don’t mean that in some hokey, self-help way. Your brain contains 86 billion neurons and has this really fancy thing called a prefrontal cortex that lets you have super complex thoughts. You are perceiving reality in the most sophisticated way possible.
You see what I’m getting at? You’re a miracle by simply existing as a sentient, curious, intelligent, one-of-a-kind human. It’s an amazing time to be alive in this world. Today might suck. Tomorrow might too. But things are looking good, my friend.
Yeah, that interview didn’t go well, that client is difficult, the food was mediocre and overpriced, traffic is bad today, it’s raining, your sportsball team lost, and your Roomba ate your phone charger, but still...life is so good. Don’t let the small things become big ones.
And when you do run into big ones, that’s a different story. You will never hear me reminding someone how cool a prefrontal cortex is when they’ve lost a loved one. It’s not appropriate or helpful. There’s no “perspective” in the world that can ease the pain of some tribulations.
You get the wrong drink at Starbucks, someone backs into your car, and the UPS package got delayed from the snow...you get the idea. There’s only so much real estate to occupy in that amazing mind of yours. Be careful what you allow to take up space.
Books I recommend: