When unexpected things happen it can be very hard to “go with the flow”. Change is one thing; unexpected out of the blue blindsiding is completely another. I welcome change, new beginnings, growth… But even really GOOD surprises have always been an issue for me. It’s as if my startle reflex kicks in and I jump in fear and react regardless of whether the surprise is ultimately positive or negative. This is not something I can explain other than I just have above. It is what it is and I try to cope with it to the best of my ability. Let me tell you it is not easy at times because life can throw you many a curve ball (even good ones that you do catch).
Now some people love surprises. These people baffle me as I am sure I baffle them. Today was filled with good surprises, but surprises none the less that had me reactive and fearful. Once I move past the reaction (which honestly can sometimes take a bit), the reality and essence of the surprise comes into the light and I can make a clearer distinction between a valuable and welcome surprise and a more negative unpleasant one. Honestly sometimes after stepping back for a while a surprise can be a bit of both simultaneously.
I sit now and write watching a beautiful pink and purple sunset. The day has been eventful to say the least. But once again I feel a deep sense of gratitude for the strength I’ve gained from coping with today’s surprises. When surprises are good, what strength is there to be gained? Because I was caught off guard it tried my emotions and it took while to put it all in perspective. I learned from it and hence became stronger.
The need to bring food into this blog exists because I know there are some of you who read this because of the weight loss angle. I think this topic is apropos. We can compare this to the surprise birthday cake brought to your office. Here is a surprise that seems both negative and positive. So how do you react? Unfortunately, given my nature I react quickly with fear. When I was actively trying to lose weight my internal thoughts might have gone something like this: “Oh my goodness,
what do I do? I can’t eat this. I shouldn’t eat this, but I don’t want to offend so and so who remembered my birthday and went out of their way. I don’t want to hurt their feelings.” So the fear may paralyze me for a bit. But since this is kind of low down on the “surprise” scale, I probably could take that moment of brief fear, step back and be able to just thank the considerate individual and so as not to hurt their feelings take a small piece and let that be my cheat for the week. There are harder surprises with food, more difficult to navigate; The surprise catered lunch from a client, the free dessert you didn’t know came with the meal, the caloric count of the meal you just ate at your friends’ house; these surprises are a bit harder to navigate for some of us. The holidays, parties, going out to dinner, etc., these can be somewhat “prepared” for. But surprises catch us off guard and can make rational decision making very difficult
It’s helpful to know what triggers a person’s negative reactions. Whether you are a person who enjoys surprises or not I hope this blog was helpful in someway. I use this space to chronicle my journey with the hope that it may help even just one person.