Why I Get Stoked When Crap Hits the Fan

I am so lazy when things are going awesome.

Really, I am. Contracts in, rent paid, traffic up, contacts made, some charitable giving and then I am RIPE for a full day of HGTV marathons. Like a boss.

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You know – when something doesn’t go the way we thought it would? When we’re lost and have no idea what the hell we’re doing? Extreme disappointment when a life changing opportunity falls through? When life seems to be going perfectly, then all the sudden someone you love leaves you?

Well, I’m glad you asked. I indulge in a total panicky meltdown, mixed with fierce determination, sprinkled with self-doubt and sleepless, crazed nights mumbling “Why? WHY!?”

But what if we flipped the script a little bit?

What if, when life hands us a shit sandwich, we get excited? It doesn’t mean we have to like it or not cry about it. But what if we could see it for what it really was?

The epic kick in the butt that causes us to move?

I wish most of us didn’t need suffering for clarity, but we do so we might as well look at this phenomenon with curiosity and excitement rather than laying face down defeated.

“WHY ME!?!?” and “Why me?” are the same words, but when you say it with curiosity rather than victimized panic, suddenly a world of opportunities starts to roll out like a carpet.

Hmm, why me? Why now? Something interesting must be happening, so I better pay attention.

That feels so much better than that one time I said my life was over with snot running down my nose.

I want to be clear that I’m not referring to tragedies or abuse. That’s a separate post and I’m confident I’m not fit to write it.

But I am talking about hardships. We can suffer tiny tragedies everyday. From cold shoulders to angry emails from our bosses to medical bills that might make us go bankrupt.

The book deal we so longed for falls through, a friend’s betrayal. You show up with a big grin to the event and people treat you differently and you don’t know why.

I know all the right mantras. I know that no one adds a day to their life with worry. I know the gifts of positive thinking – I’ve experienced them. I’ve surrendered and I’ve felt peace.

 But sometimes when bad news hits at all the wrong times, I can drop my faith like a carrot when someone hands me a cupcake.

So what if we do something crazy? What if instead of falling apart when we hit an obstacle, a disappointment, or terrible news – we get excited?

I’m talking, really, really excited. Because our faith was so big, so resolute, that we get all “Real Housewives of New Jersey” on fear when it keeps rattling off nonsense?

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What if we truly believed that every obstacle was a masked opportunity, waiting to propel us, push us, sometimes drag us to the next level? The next exact place we’re called to go?

I remember flipping through channels and I caught an Oprah interview with Joel Olsteen. He said, “You have to come to your closed doors before you get to your open doors. What if you knew you had to go through 32 closed doors before you got to your open door? Well, then you’d come to closed door number eight and you’d think, ‘Great, I got another one out of the way’… Keep moving forward. You’re learning from them and you’re one step closer to the open door.”

There’s something about this that hit my brain like a tuning fork.

Is it possible to have a faith so big that when a door closes, we start immediately pelvic thrusting because we know we’re that much closer to the right door opening?

The answer is yes. It’s simply a matter of doing the work. The work of – continually blocking out lies we’re tempted to tell ourselves and embrace the truth.

You are worthy. You were perfectly and beautifully made. And you have a purpose. Period.

As an aside, am I the only one who starts pelvic thrusting when I start winning at life and/or Scrabble?

Faith isn’t sitting on the couch waiting for miracles to come to our door like the Dominos guy. Faith gets up and does the work.

Listen, I’m in the valley, y’all. I’m in a transition and I literally have no idea what I’m supposed to do.

I was talking with a wonderful woman who has been helping me process my transition. I expressed to her all my fears. I’m dependent on technology and social platforms for my growth and as these platforms change the impact on me can be great. I perceived myself going backwards instead of forwards and there is literally nothing I can do about it. I felt like I had pushed a boulder up a huge mountain and right before I made it to the top, the boulder took hold and it started pushing me backwards down the hill. No matter how hard I push, my feet keep sliding in sand as the boulder pushes me farther and farther away.

Did I mention I can be dramatic sometimes?

Then she said, “Oh Anna. Hasn’t it occurred to you that you’re past that now? These are tools that have served you to get you here, now. It’s time to move up to the next level. The brush in the forest has to burn away so the oak tree can flourish.”

I was all like, “Oh.”

I mean, duh, you guys! DUH!

How naïve of me to think that my God given talents, gifts – that my calling – my destiny – was dependent on Facebook?

Of course I’m going to continue to utilize all the technological tools made available, but to give them power over my life’s calling is RIDONKulous.

Maybe I’m not going back down the mountain at all. Perhaps I pushed the boulder as far as it will go and now it’s time to hop on the trail right next to it that will take me to an even greater mountain top.

How about that? HUH!?

My mom told me this awhile ago and it reveals itself time and time again:

destinyquote

That doesn’t mean people can’t screw us and we can’t screw others. That doesn’t mean we can’t inflict harm on ourselves with our own mistakes. It doesn’t mean we can’t be cruel to others and suffer the consequences accordingly.

But it does mean that we are forgiven, that we must forgive ourselves, and then mistakes simply transform into stepping stones, not wrecking balls.

(You’re picturing Miley riding a wrecking ball like a wild stallion right now, aren’t you? Sorry about that.)

So, what if we rejoice the next time crap hits the fan?

What if we clapped our hands and high-fived the person sitting next to us on the bus when we get the rejection call?

What if our faith was so overwhelming, so overflowing, that it spilled from us and washed over every problem exposing it for how silly it actually is?

It’s harder than it sounds and I fail at it all the time. But there have been moments when something surprising and deeply disappointing happens and I had the courage in that moment to think, “Wow, something really awesome must be coming my way if this amazing opportunity isn’t to be mine.”

Something really awesome came. It just didn’t look like what I thought it should look like.

We worry because there is no certainty, but here is all the certainty you need:

Our destiny is a God given calling. It is a gift.

No one. No thing. Can ever. EVER. Take away our destiny.

When crap hits the fan, it just might me be splattering rainbows and unicorns all over the place.

So, what were we so worried about again?

If you think this post topic could help a friend, feel free to share it. I’d also love to hear from you in the comments. We’re a team, yeah?

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16 Comments on “Why I Get Stoked When Crap Hits the Fan

  1. Yes, yes, and yes!!! A little change in perspective can make such a world of difference in how we perceive crisis and chaos. I love the bit you talk about with faith because you’re spot on – it’s easy to drop it and then forget where we put the dang thing when we hit speed bumps. I’m still learning (because, hey, when do we really arrive?) to stop and ask those “why” questions. Since I’m a woman of faith it usually lands me with asking God what He’s trying to show me or teach me. Kind of a bummer that it takes us getting knocked on our butts to figure things out. Funny thing is that now when things are going smooth I start to introspect and see if I’m still growing or becoming stagnant – because you’re right, once it gets easy we can get lazy. Will be thinking of you as you get through this crisis and can’t wait to hear about all the growth and awesomeness that come from it.

    • Audrey!

      I love this comment. And I love that you have the presence to check yourself in the good times. It really is a skill.

      Sometimes I view obstacles like adventures. It can make it almost exciting to know that a shift is occurring. Thank you for sending me those thoughts – cuz you know I’m gonna write about it, gurl!

  2. Definetly something I needed to hear tonight! I’m not going through a hard time right now, life is actually going smooth. But I’m definetly stoic and going through the motions. Next time something pops up, I’m totally doing a hip thrust.

  3. I love this post!! I have had moments of clarity like this, but it’s hard to see when you are in the valley as you say. I was once fired from my job, what I thought was the lowest point in my life, but it took me to a totally different place in my career that I love. Now I look back and I am glad the door closed. I need to remind myself of this as another door is closing in my life (relationship, not a job this time).

    • You’re so right. It’s hard to think positively when things appear to be falling apart – it’s like a spiritual/emotional muscle we have to exercise ALL THE TIME. It’s so good to mourn – but still realizing the sun will come out and shine greater than ever when the cloud moves away can be very powerful.

      I’m sending you lots of love!

  4. So much truth punching me in the mouth through your post. I’ve seen this happen in my life…but, I still forget to see the opportunity the next time crap hits the fan. Thanks for this!

  5. I LOVE this! I definitely needed this reminder today. ***Wow, something really awesome must be coming my way if this amazing opportunity isn’t to be mine*** I think that more woman need to think in these terms and know that you don’t have to settle for where you’re at just because one thing doesn’t go your way. There’s just something out there better for you. Everything happens for a reason right? Thanks for the great reminders of how to stay positive and moving on in the direction of our dreams. Kind of makes me want to leave my office right now and do something completely stupid… Like go back to school and do what I’m really passionate about. (Or maybe I’ll save that for another day)

    As always, great read. 🙂

    • I love that this post has your wheels turning. I challenge you to do ONE thing this week, no matter how small, that brings you one step closer to your passion. Keep me posted!

  6. I like the concept. And my question is how do you build that absolute faith? Because so many thoughts happen. I feel very conditioned in being who I am 🙂 I think, I grasp onto thoughts, I form them I tho stories. And these are all tainted stories- tainted by my past and my perceived deficiencies. “I’m not good enough” “he/she/they don’t really care” “I’m alone”. And in the midst of boulder pushing, all I can seem to see is the boulder. I can’t see that it’s thoughts and stories. I’m there pushing my imaginary boulder and I can’t see my imaginary savior path right next to me. I am scared. And the boulder is all I have in that moment. Letting it go would be like death. And I can recognize all these things. And I can read what you are writing. But I can’t stop pushing boulders bc of the fear? or the lack of faith? or both? And so I have my doors and I go through them, but I fight it every step of the way. So how do I get the faith that my destiny is beautiful? That when one door closes another opens? I get it logically. Emotionally in the moment- that’s the …problem/issue…whatever.

  7. “WHY ME!?!?” and “Why me?” are the same words, but when you say it with curiosity rather than victimized panic, suddenly a world of opportunities starts to roll out like a carpet.

    These words jumped out at me. I love them. In fact, with your permission, this will be the quote that everyone sees at the end of my e-mail. I’ll make sure to attach your name and web address so others can enjoy your ideas as well.

    Life is all about perspective and we control our perspective. Interestingly enough, I’m not foolish enough to believe the inverse of that – I know we don’t control life.

    Make it a great day!

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