By Gail Lynne Goodwin.
Six weeks. Forty-two days.
If you live in a climate where you only have 6 weeks of summer, it flies by in an instant. But, if you have to go on a restrictive diet for 6 weeks, suddenly that same period of time drags on as if it were eternity. Funny thing is, forty-two days is still forty-two days. The only thing that makes it seem long or short, is our perspective.
Just a couple of weeks ago I was coaching a client through a difficult situation where she needed to relocate for her job for 6 weeks. It’s difficult to leave family and responsibilities, even if the disruption will create a positive outcome for the rest of her life. I remember telling her that Memorial Day will be here before she knows it, and the time will fly by! Besides, we can do anything for 6 weeks, right?
The next day I went skiing, tore my MCL and fractured a bone in my right knee. I had to laugh when the orthopedic doc told me I needed to be on crutches for 6 weeks. SIX weeks?! I can’t do that! I’m too busy! I have places to go, people to see, things to do… I can’t disrupt my life! Six weeks is F-O-R-E-V-E-R!
I didn’t miss the irony in my good-intentioned words from the previous day, as they came back to haunt me. We can do anything for six weeks. The period of time was exactly the same, yet suddenly six weeks felt so much longer when it was ME facing a task for six weeks.
But regardless of how we look at it, it’s still 42 days. The only thing that changed was my perspective.
I was reminded that I might not get to chose the situation or the circumstances, but I DO get to chose the perspective at how I look at life.
The next time I whine about something taking sooo long, I’ll remember that time is what it is, and the only thing that makes it different, is the value I put on it.
Photo Credit: Max Elman
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Hope your injury heals up soon.
Author of You Want Me to Do WHAT? Journaling for Caregivers