I went for a walk.

It was a beautiful day. The sun was poised in the western sky at that point right before sinking towards sunset; that brief and silent pause before changing direction.

Stepping in rhythm to the song on my mp3 player, I set the pace for another good power walk.

Five minutes later I was rudely cut off by a driver who was either in a bad mood or who simply refused to give pedestrians the right of way. I swore under my breath and scowled at him. This got me to thinking about other situations and people I’d come across that annoyed me.

I walked and wandered further, reflecting on this intrusion into my thoughts. I wandered past remembering these times to remembering how my reaction whether expressed or not, had bothered me.

I had regretted allowing myself to be caught off guard; for not “walking my talk”.

More walking. I remembered how after letting go of judgment and of what had annoyed me, I was able to see how differently the situation could have been handled.

I reminded myself that my path would most likely come across more idiots and obstacles. By expecting them I would be less likely to react.

With this, I felt less vulnerable. The power walk was back on.

I’ve always believed in the power of positive thinking. But isn’t it true that dwelling only on the positive doesn’t necessarily mean your life will always be rosy? Life happens and we never know why some experiences come across our paths. Some things can’t be controlled, but attitude certainly can be.

Wearing rose-coloured glasses doesn’t help anyone. Through meditation, I’ve focused on the positive and tried to ignore the negative. But the fact remains that it is there in many different forms and you can’t walk away from it.

When you simply notice negativity, in yourself and in others, you are not inviting it in. By noticing it and not judging it, you put yourself in the position to shift its path and let it go.

Noticing doesn’t mean you have to accept or put up with the situation. But, it can give you a moment to make up your mind how and if you will handle it.

Noticing keeps you flexible. It gives life a chance to flow as it needs to.

It takes practice though. But don’t worry…

There will be traffic delays.
You may be put on hold for too many minutes.
Sometimes you’ll wait in long lines.
People make mistakes.
You might miss the bus.

Just a few examples.

Is there a particular situation where you remember not having responded the way you would have liked to?

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Photo Credit: Prony

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