Remember when the world was simple? When choices were black or white? If you are a Millennial, you probably don’t remember those times when a decision was an easy “either/or.”
Back then, you could look at life through dark glasses or through rose-colored glasses. If you wore dark glasses, you were called a pessimist. People thought you gave off bad vibes. They might even describe you as an energy vampire who sucked the light out of everyone else.
If you wore rose-colored glasses, you were called a dreamer. You lived in la-la land, disconnected from reality. You believed in angels and talked about precious gifts from the universe.
Then the symbolism changed. People stopped talking about the glasses you wore and talked instead about the glass you drank out of. Was your glass half-empty or half-full? The question was still black or white, dark or rose, either/or!
Fortunately nowadays, our vision for ourselves and our lives has expanded. Life is neither black nor white. It is both black and white, with all the shades in between. The glasses we look through are neither dark nor rose. They are photochromic, meaning they can change color when the light changes.
Even more important, the glass we drink out of is neither half-full nor half-empty. It is refillable. My message to you is, to get the best out of life, embrace . . . wait for it! . . .neutrality!
When things happen, why rush to the conclusion that they are good or bad? That’s a judgment that will guide the success or failure of your day — and it may be the wrong judgment.
Imagine this. You receive a phone call and you judge it to be the best news ever. For the rest of the day, the decisions you make will not be made objectively. They’ll be tainted by that judgment early in the morning, and they may not be the best decisions for you.
Or, if that phone call brings you terrible news, your day will be shattered. Every decision you make will be spoiled by that early negative judgment.
You see, optimism and pessimism are just judgments. The truth lies somewhere in between, in our ability not to judge and not to let our actions be manipulated by our emotions. Neutrality is the new choice.
Let’s look at another example. Many of us have had a relationship that ended and we felt like our life was over. Then, years later, after we found true happiness, we thought about how miserable we had been because we rushed to judgment and let our emotions hijack our life.
We ask ourselves, Why did I waste so much time being miserable? In truth, that episode opened up my life in unexpected ways!
Of course, the opposite can happen too. We judge something as fantastic and then it ends up causing us grief and regret.
What’s the answer? Neutrality! Neutrality is the place to surrender to after the hormones have found balance, after you have experienced a little of life and you appreciate that life is so much more than one thing.
Many people still judge that being an optimist is better than being a pessimist. They rush to judgment when things happen. In the long run, is that a good way to think?
Yes, it’s possible to have the best day every day. How? Here are my suggestions:
- Approach decisions with objectivity . . . and if you’re Italian like me, maintain your lively and dramatic Italian attitude!
- Accept the day without judgment. Who says it’s better to be optimistic than pessimistic? We are human! The possibilities are infinite, so why limit ourselves to one or the other? Sometimes it’s fine to be optim-pessim-istic!
- Remain neutral in the face of adversity. Look at the big picture of life. When you’re ninety, will it really matter that you didn’t return three emails today?
- Always remember that you have choices over your thoughts. Listen to your thoughts and deal with one thought at a time.
Now, let me go refill that glass. I’m thirsty for a life without judgment.
Are you ready to explore more possibilities in all areas of your life? Connect with Monica for a complimentary refilling session.
Originally published at www.lunacoaching.com on March 24, 2017.