There are Benefits to Marvelous Disasters

pretty hole in the floorI am a positive person, much to the annoyance of some and delight to others; I am someone that tries to see the bright side or opportunity no matter the situation.

I also think life has a wicked sense of humor and normally appreciate it as my humor is a bit warped. Last week it had a marathon going and I reaped the full benefit of this brand of humor.

The week before last or thereabouts I had several thoughts going on in my head, this is not unusual. Things that crossed my mind were I needed to take a day to recharge, I hadn’t slept well and was feeling a bit sluggish. I had been looking at different flooring options and I am contemplating changing the flooring on the main floor of my house. I also wanted to change the bench seat in my front room. When I built it, I put doors that opened from the front and I want to change it for a top open with a cushion attached that was dog-proof.

Careful what you wish for.

Monday I found myself in the full throw of a horrendous sinus infection that not only took away my voice and the ability to breathe through my nose, it gave me a five second delay for every thought and knocked me out. I got my rest.

Wednesday I woke to find a frozen river in my backyard. Literally. All along the back of my yard and culminating in a nice ice skating pond in the back was a frozen river. It had not been there the day before.

I contacted the water company to discover two things: I had a pipe burst somewhere in my foundation and it costs over $600 to create a frozen river in my back yard. Who knew?

For three days last week I had a crew digging four holes in my home through the foundation and had no water. For three days I had the task of keeping three dogs from helping the crew and staying out of the holes.

One hole is where the bench seat used to be. It had to be disassembled and removed to accommodate the dig. One hole is in my living room where the flooring I have been contemplating changing is now removed.

I asked for the opportunity for a few things and life delivered. Not exactly the way I would have preferred, but it delivered.

I discovered that a friend I went to school with is an amazing plumber and handyman who is the epitome of the qualities you want in someone destroying parts of your home: honesty, integrity, professionalism, humor and tenacity. He is my guy, no matter what happens in my home from now on, Steve gets the call.

I discovered my son can sleep through jackhammers. Literally slept through it all.

I rediscovered the lovely qualities of compassion and humor in people. From my clients that kept my humor up to my friends that allowed me to shower at their home and fill up water jugs to others that sent me sweet messages to keep my head up.

I realized that if I had to have one major utility go out in my home, it should be the water. I still had heat, electricity, able to cook, sleep well and care for the pups.

I discovered that at some point we can all get what we want, the rub it that it may not exactly be delivered in the way in which you would prefer.

But that is the adventure. It might not seem like an adventure; it might actually on first blush seem like a catastrophe, but it is an opportunity.

Your wish list might include a certain company, specific job or land a particular client. What happens if you get into the company and you hate it – it is completely opposite of what you dreamed of?

As far as the specific job, what if you were offered a completely different path? Do you really know that it won’t still lead you to that position? Do you thumb your nose at this other opportunity because it is not exactly what you want? Perhaps there is something for you to learn in this detour that will make the desired position even more magnificent by the time you get there.

What happens when that client signs with you and they turn out to be completely opposite of pre-engagement? They could have been completely engaged in the process and positive and once they sign the dotted line they become aloof, uncooperative and a nightmare to work with?

One of the cruelest things we can do to ourselves is to focus on the end game with a single, tunnel-vision precision view of the goal. We neglect to look at the most important aspect – the journey.

It is the twists and turns, the seemingly negative or potentially disastrous events that lead to the goal that are important game changers. It is also how you handle the pot holes and detours on your path that help determine where it leads.

Make goals, have dreams and shoot for the stars and then realize that on the way to achieving these wonderful things that you could quite possibly have the craziest, rockiest, muddiest or most frozen road there.

If you can embrace those mudslides, rocks, ice and detours your victory will taste sweeter; you will be stronger and more educated to grab those goals with both hands and celebrate. You will find small victories and celebrations along the way.

Sometimes they are reminders to appreciate what you have; sometimes they are reminders to lighten up. Sometimes they allow you to gain the knowledge to be able to offer a helping hand or kind word to someone else down the road and confidently say, “I’ve been there, it will get better.”

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