So much of life is not what happens to us but, to overuse a common cliche, our reactions to what happens. So, in my own case, there has been a great deal in my life over which I have had no control and which I would not have chosen to occur. And there were times where I allowed those circumstances to overwhelm me and could not react in the best manner.
However, I have tried to learn lessons from everything that has happened in this life and apply those lessons where applicable. Rest assured, that has not always been easy nor, in some cases, at all possible. Life and death situations have, understandably, been very difficult to approach with anything resembling equanimity and I have struggled through those situations. But life is much more mundane than significant life and death situations (thankfully, those are fairly rare) and that is where the lessons can be more applicable. Frustrations at work, traffic, poor customer service, forgotten services or any number of other things are items that tend to be very temporary and, hopefully, easily resolved. Sometimes, it just takes time away from a given situation to restore some positive thought to one's life. Other times, a new day or a conversation with someone else can offer new perspective on a situation that perhaps is not so bad as it seems at the given moment. Granted, this is not always easy as we can be so wrapped up in a situation we are unable or unwilling to see anything beyond our own limited perspective. But if we can recognize that we are viewing situations from a very limited perspective, perhaps that will help to find ways to alleviate them.
So, for example, while driving today, I hit some rough traffic which I normally find very aggravating - particularly if I'm running late (which I was today). However, I then made myself compare it to the last time I made this particular drive - when I was even later with more traffic - and realized that, in the overall scheme of things, today's traffic was not such an issue to be stressed over.
And this week has been a particularly rough week at my office which has been an issue as my entire team has been impacted by some pretty significant changes - all negative. However, while rough, I have tried to look at each incident individually and recognize that, while they are all hard cumulatively, they are easier to handle as separate issues and try to work with each of them as such. This enabled me to resolve those issues I could and to take a deep breath on those I couldn't and just let them go until the next day - understanding that the next day will hopefully offer a better perspective or, at the very least, a better attitude. And sometimes, a better attitude can make a huge difference.