We have all heard that we shouldn’t sweat the small stuff. Letting oneself get stressed out over the little things in life is one of the biggest ways to bring unnecessary grief into life’s path. We can avoid a lot of negative feelings, and even health problems, simply by learning not to let the little things get to us.
Focus on the Big Picture
When something small happens that makes you want to rage, compare the moment’s significance to everything else going on in your own life, and in the world around you. You may have spilt your cake batter on the floor an hour before your guests are due to arrive. Are your friends still going to love you and enjoy the evening even if you don’t have a freshly baked cake for them? If so, maybe you should put your energy somewhere other than berating yourself for this small mistake.
Remember That We All Make Mistakes
When something small threatens to destroy your attitude and positive outlook, think about the fact that everyone makes mistakes. Whether it is yourself or someone else who caused the situation that feels like a train wreck, keep in mind that mistakes are a normal part of life that happen to everyone. Don’t let one bad moment take you by surprise.
It can be hard to forgive someone else when it feels like they have brought you extra work and stress. When someone rear-ends your vehicle, you may be tempted to lash out at them verbally. However, stop and think about how it may feel to be in their situation. Don’t act and feel as though you have never made a mistake, but choose empathy.
Forgiving others can be a simple matter in comparison to forgiving ourselves. There are many moments that we treat ourselves worse than we would ever allow a friend to treat us.
When you are having a difficult time forgiving yourself, think of how you would handle a similar mistake made by a good friend. Stop and think before bullying yourself, and consider seeking professional help if you can’t stop a cascade of negative thoughts every time you fall short of perfection.
Ask Yourself If It Will Matter in Ten Years
We all have problems, and generally, at the time, any problem seems big. Perception is not always the truth, though, and it is up to us to put our situation into perspective so that we can properly deal with whatever comes our way.
When something negative happens in your life, ask yourself if it will matter in ten years. If it won’t, let it go. If someone gives you the middle finger in traffic, you may be tempted to lose your cool, but it is simply not worth it. Save your emotions for things that are life-changing and deserve your full attention.
When something goes wrong, you have two choices. You can slip into a rage, or let it go. Making the choice not to sweat the small stuff will bring you life-changing happiness, and you will be thankful for your own shift in perspective.