I was walking out of the office and I had somehow left the weight that I had been carrying on my shoulders. The news released me from the burden that had been lingering around for the past few months. I decided to take the scenic route home and enjoy the day. I wanted to know if what happens in the movies is true, so I closed my eyes, lifted my head towards the sky, and took a big breath in. To my surprise, the air was crisp and fresh, and I felt at peace. I looked to my arm and a ladybug was walking up my right side. It all started to feel like a sign from the universe. As a reasonable and predictable person, I was about to take a picture of the ladybug when it flew away. I watched it fly away and I could not stop thinking about the fact that it had left when I needed it.
You would think that what stayed with me for the rest of the day was maybe the good news that I had received, the movie scene that I experienced after the fact, or the ladybug landing on my arm. No, that is not what I kept thinking for the rest of the day. I thought about the ladybug flying away in the precise moment that I was going to snap a picture. Was that a bad sign? Did it mean that the good feeling or peace was about to be taken away from me? That is when I realized that I had ruined my own peace of mind.
The exact good news that I received does not matter. The important detail is how long the good news lasted as good in my mind. This happens to most of us. We ruin the good that we have because we over-analyze things and do not enjoy the moments that are given to us. As pop culture would call it, that is our toxic trait.
In a capitalist and individualistic society, all that matters are efficiency and profit. It is not just talking about money. It is about how to do everything in the best way to receive the best results. The result in this case is having the best life. When you want the product to be the best, you make sure that you are taking the actions that will lead you to the end most efficiently. In doing so, you end up analyzing anything and everything that happens to you in order to see if you are on the right path to get to the best life. What better way to improve the product than by finding and fixing the flaws?
As good as the best life sounds, the process that we take is oftentimes not the healthiest. In order to achieve this goal that we have been wired to obtain, we lose sight of important things, like our mental health. Being too focused on the failures and the negative things in our lives without being cognizant of what it can do your health is a dangerous game. Sooner or later, you might find yourself unhappy with your life because you are only seeing the negative events or aspects.
In a time where there has been plenty of bad news happening around the world, we need to embrace and enjoy the good things, even if they are small. Sometimes attempting to make sense of everything that happens to us can do more harm than good. This will not solve your issues or mental health, but it is a good step to be able to breathe a little easier. Now, don't get me wrong, I am not saying that you shouldn't think about why certain things happen. Being sad or angry about events in our lives are fair emotions. The negative feelings and thoughts are valid and should not be seen as something bad to be ashamed of. Rather, we need to shift our focus into turning those emotions into positive actions.
Yes, the ladybug flew away and it could mean an undesirable thing. However, the ladybug landed on me in the first place and that is a reminder of the good things that happened to me that day.
In more poetic words, turn the weight of a log into the spirit of fire.