In today’s post to his Jack’s Winning Words blog, Jack used this little saying that he saw on a Burger King crown – “No one’s happy all the time…and that’s OK.”
Jack must have seen that crown in May of this year, when Mental Health Month was celebrated in the United States. We see mental health advice or tips in many places, mostly in cheery little messages that are trying to chase the blues away. It is more realistic to say, as Burger King did, that we all have ups and downs and that it is OK to be down a little, so long as you don’t allow yourself to spiral all the way down into depression. In fact, poking a little fun at being down can often help relieve some of the tension that comes with being down.
A down feeling can result from many causes – a failure or defeat at work, the loss of a loved one, the end of a relationship and many other causes. In most cases the thing that you are down about was always out of your ability to control, but was all have a tendency to think that we could have done something different to effect the outcome and change history – we get down on ourselves.
That feeling of guilt stems from the thoughts that we could have done something different noticed something sooner or made a different choice or decision. Those thoughts can keep us awake at night going over and over the scenarios in our minds that will forever remained as options that we did not choose.
Sometimes our down mood is not about the past, but about the future – we play out option after option in our mind, fearing that the worst that we can imagine is going to happen. We spend restless nights in mental anguish fearing things that will never happen.
Chinese philosopher Lao Tzu had this bit of philosophical advice –
“If you are depressed you are living in the past.
If you are anxious you are living in the future.
If you are at peace you are living in the present.
Lao-Tzu was a Chinese philosopher believed to have lived in the 6th Century BC and is credited with founding the philosophical system of Taoism, which stresses being in harmony with nature.
The best way that one can be at peace in the present is be at peace with God. Accept that God’s will has been done in the past and trust that it will be done in the future. Rather than lament what is past or fear what is in the future, marvel at what God is unfolding for you in the present.
Focus your attention on the wonderful people that he is causing to cross your path, so that you might experience them. Become more aware of, and thankful for, the wonders of nature that God has put all around you. Be thankful for the challenges that God is presenting to you to keep your life interesting. Make use of your time to learn and to increase your knowledge. Put 100% of your mental and physical effort into the moment at hand, rather than wasting either on things that are past or which may be in the future.
Many find the Bible to be the best guide book for life and in the Bible we find these words –
“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.” – John 14:27
Find your way to peace in the present.