On a recent flight to Chicago from Boston, I was annoyed, annoyed to the point of having to flip my sour outlook. I needed to apply the same advice I employ with my coachees. But to see how I got to that point, I have to share how miserable the experience was.
It’s 5:00 a.m. at Logan, winding long lines with no visible endpoint, crappy and over-priced food with the only decent coffee shop a long haul from my gate, and the security guy who went through every suitcase. The only humor here was the crowd of people standing around waiting for their luggage to be cleared and gaping at the often shocking and hilarious contents of people’s bags. I’m waiting to read about the person who wins a mega-suit for a breach of confidentiality. Add to that the crowded gate area and the parents who couldn’t have cared less when their kid threw a foam football casting my $5 muffin to the floor. The flight was delayed and no one smiled, including me.
Then I said to myself, okay, enough! There’s humor here, time to find it. Well, humor may be a stretch, but positive? Yes there’s plenty of that. (I recall the Dalai Lama saying that when you force a smile, you feel more positive. He’s right about that.) First, I’m lucky to have a flight and a mission to accomplish. Second, I’m sane, healthy and strong for my age. My husband is a gem. I was lucky to have a great education and speak two languages. My clients are making great strides, and that gives me purpose. I wrote a popular book that’s helping people, and I’m working on a new one. Modern technology makes it safer to fly. I have two hours to sit, look out a window with few distractions and think. That is a luxury. Perhaps in the future, quiet undisturbed time to think at a high altitude will be a sought-after commodity meant to “uplift” sagging spirits? And, that muffin, for some cosmic reason, was not meant for my consumption today. A little fasting is good for the soul.
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