Melissa and I are trying to squeeze in as many beach days as possible before the end of summer. The weather here in the northeast US has been quite volatile for the past few months so you never know what you’re going to get.
I love the idea of relaxing in the sun with my toes in the sand, but preparing to go feels like a pain in the ass sometimes.
Aside from assembling a lunch of some sort, I have to gather the necessary supplies:
︎ Beach bag
And what if we get there and there’s no parking?
Or what if, after we’re all settled, a smoker plops down near us (which happens far more often than you’d believe).
It’s just… so… much.
But is it really? I mean, poor me. Waaah, I’m going to the beach.
Be honest — you were already thinking it.
It goes to show you how easy it is to make something more difficult than it actually is, eh?
Do I really dread the beach prep? A bit.
Does it ever take me longer than 20 minutes? No.
If there was no parking, we wait or we come back home and hang by the pool.
If Joe Camel sits near us, we move.
See? When you play out all the “what ifs,” you’ll almost always find your manufactured hurdles are much bigger in your head than they are in reality.
I use this ridiculous example of going to the beach to make a point (if you haven’t caught that already). Even something easy and pleasurable can be complicated by the stories we make up.
It’s worth paying attention to these stories — ya know the ones about how something will or won’t be, how capable or incapable you are of doing it, or what people will think — all concocted before you’ve even made a move.
Because they’re usually BS.
OK, more like fear, discomfort, and limiting beliefs rolled up in a big pile of BS.
When you notice yourself performing mental gymnastics to complicate a situation, challenge your thinking.
- What if this was easy?
- What if I blow my expectations out of the water?
- What if I succeed at a level I never imagined possible?
I mean, if we’re going to make up stories, might as well make them good.