I was all set to finish up a post I had written about orange warning cones and holes in the sidewalk. I had worked on it all afternoon and only had a couple of paragraphs left to comb over when I decided to turn off my computer and head into town for a quick bite to eat. So off I went.
After the meal, as I was driving home (about an hour ago), belly full and eager to publish my post, I hit a speed bump while traveling at about 30 mph. I hit that bump hard and for a moment felt as if I had been given a small role alongside Luke in the “Dukes of Hazzard”. Although, as soon as my tiny car landed back on the ground, I didn’t carry on at dangerously high speeds in an attempt to outrun Boss Hogg or Sheriff Roscoe Coltrane. I simply downshifted into second gear and crawled along for the rest of the distance to my apartment.
The reason I hadn’t noticed the speed bump was that moments before, I had suddenly realized that I missed an important conference call earlier in the afternoon. And while on its own, this certainly wasn’t too big of a deal and could have been attributed to the hectic day I was having, unfortunately, this was not the first mishap or frustration of the past week.
Actually, even in terms of conference calls alone, this was the third one I had missed in seven days and that was a frustrating thought, enough to keep my mind racing all over the place and not focused on the road.
Orange Cones or No Orange Cones?
Right now I am back in my apartment and my post about orange warning cones is staring me right in the face, begging to be finished, but I don’t feel like finishing it tonight. I’m going to leave that post for another time. Instead, I’m going to see if I can snap myself out of my gloomy state of mind and regain the positive energy that I have temporarily misplaced (perhaps its in the same place as my swim suit that I can’t find).
First, I’m going to get all the negativity out of my system by writing down some of the issues I’ve faced this week. And the best way to do that is to start with those conference calls.
I had one scheduled for last Saturday, one for Monday morning and another one this afternoon. On Friday I misjudged the amount of time I needed to drive home from Cancun and after being pulled over by the police for apparently driving too close to the car in front of me and then being caught up in a drug-search roadblock (that’s the last time I don’t shave before driving on the highway), I arrived home after the conference call had already ended.
On Monday, the internet in my apartment stopped working one hour before the call and so I jumped in the car and began to drive over to a cafe that offers wifi. I made it about 100 feet down the road when the front right tire blew out. Luckily, I found myself in front of a mechanic shop, but unluckily, I found myself speaking with a not-so-friendly mechanic who refused to let me borrow his jack. Naturally, the jack which I had seen only days ago in my car was now nowhere in sight. By the time I borrowed a jack, put on the spare tire and drove over to a ‘llanteria’ where they fixed the original tire, over 50 minutes had passed. Then, when I finally arrived at the cafe, relieved at only being 10 minutes late for the call, the cafe was undergoing renovations and there was nowhere to sit and participate in the conference call.
And that brings me to today’s conference call. I simply forgot about it. Hooray for me!
Let’s See…What Else Went Wrong?
On top of these missed calls, I also discovered that one of the eBooks I created and now sell, is being sold by someone else on a website that is an exact copy of my own. Some guy in Rochester, NY (and I’m in the process of tracking him down) copied my site – everything from the sales copy to the testimonials to the colors and even the “About Me” section. And he is selling an exact word-for-word copy of my eBook. So the search for Mr. Rochester has taken up quite a bit of my time this week as I try to get this situation sorted as soon as possible.
I also received a strange series of threatening emails this week from an anonymous person claiming to be interested in purchasing this same eBook (the book is an insider’s guide to cruising based upon my time spent working in the cruise industry). Their emails keep consisting of several rude and angry statements trying to disprove what I claim to offer and then harsh demands that I answer their questions immediately while hinting at repercussions if I don’t. I have no idea what to do about this one.
And that’s not to mention spending most of Tuesday in bed with a severe headache, having the ‘fixed’ tire blow out again two days ago, accidentally brushing my teeth with shaving cream (please don’t ask) and breaking the stove while attempting to prepare french toast.
Ok, deep breath. In through the nose, out through the mouth. One more time. Deep, deep breath.
That’s a general outline of what has been a somewhat rough week. Although, I must admit, after writing all of that down, it really doesn’t seem so terrible anymore. In fact, it all seems somewhat amusing. I mean, who really misses three conference calls? While that certainly doesn’t say much about my organizational skills, I don’t think I should beat myself up over it. And the eBook issues? Of course they’ll be dealt with and I know that there’s really nothing to worry about.
One more deep breath…ok, perhaps another. It can’t hurt.
In an attempt to get me flying high through the air again, although this time without causing damage to my car, I’m going to remind myself of all the positive things that happened this past week and use that to lift me into the next seven days in better spirits. It’s a worthwhile exercise (I’m hoping) as I normally am unwavering in my belief that we should spend as much time as possible focusing on the positive aspects of our lives. So without much thinking, here’s what randomly comes to mind…
- Spent a couple of hours on three different afternoons relaxing on the beach.
- Started reading Greg Mortenson’s book “Three Cups of Tea” which I have found to be the most inspiring story of global citizenry that I have yet to come across.
- Decided to start playing basketball again after discovering a park in town where locals play every evening.
- Discovered an amazing eatery called “Dona Maria’s Loncheria” which serves the best tostadas, sabules and panuchos that I have ever eaten (although that doesn’t say much for the sabules and panuchos as I had never heard of those before).
- Visited a dentist for a teeth-cleaning for the first time in 4 years and was pleased to hear that my teeth were in perfect condition.
- Watched the film “Invictus“.
- During a restroom break in the middle of writing this post I found the swimsuit that had been lost for a week (it was in the bathroom hanging up on a hook under a towel).
- Took the ferry over to the island of Cozumel and re-visited many of the places I used to go when I worked on board cruise ships that docked on that island.
- Spoke more Spanish than English for perhaps the first time in any seven day period.
- Received emails from two old high school friends that I hadn’t spoken to since high school and have greatly enjoyed being back in touch with them.
- Was given a new pillow that instantly improved the quality of my sleep.
- Began work on a non-profit organization that I am helping to set-up with some friends.
I’m sure there’s more, but honestly, I already feel a lot better now that I’ve written those down. There really is something to be said for therapy through writing, or through blogging for that matter. So now I want to declare today the start of a new week! I see no reason to wait until Sunday or Monday and allow the negativity to linger on and on when it can be halted in its tracks immediately.
If you’re feeling frustrated about your week or even over a few days, try writing down the negatives and positives as I’ve done above. It’s simple and it can be done from anywhere and at any time. We don’t need to use some long drawn out process to help snap us out of a gloomy state of mind.
After all, just by writing this post, I have literally gone from a grumpy Gordon to a…I don’t know…just back to feeling like my happy self.
How was your week? How do you try to keep the negatives from taking control of your life?