As anyone with kids knows all too well, you cannot control the world around you. (And, you will go crazy if you try.) But, you can control your reaction. And, the easiest way to control your reaction is reframing — truly believing that the negative situation is actually good for you.
Reframing puts you back in control of your emotions and life. Here are some recent examples from my life:
It just started pouring right when I need to pick up the kids —> While I wait for the rain to die down, I’ll be able to to talk to their teachers and get the kids to show me their favorite parts of their classrooms. This ended up being my favorite part of the week. It got me to slow down and really connect with my kids.
I’m completely stressed out. I feel out of control. —> This is a great opportunity for me to practice my distressing techniques to learn what works best for me. I ended up adding a few things to my SOS checklist and felt great about my progress.
I hated how I handled that situation —> What did I learn to make sure I don’t make a similar mistake when the stakes are much higher? How can I actually use this as an opportunity to go back and not only fix the situation, but make it better than if I had not mishandled it?
Reframing is a skill that gets better the more you practice it. As with everything — start small. Every time you feel yourself getting worked up over something, ask yourself these questions:
What am I thankful for about this situation?
What would need to be true for me to look back at this situation as a positive experience?
How can I learn from this situation?
What are some common ways you reframe situations in your life?