Link to Audio Version:http://www.audioacrobat.com/play/WyFbKgns
One day last week, I felt compelled to write a rather lengthy Facebook post about how the little irritants in life would not mean anything to me if it was my last day on earth. Then I had a conversation with a colleague about her frustration when there is a lot of talk but no action on something… her words to me were “… need to stop talking about it and start doing something about it!” I realized that many times we are faced with irritation and frustration and all it takes is a little wake-up call to remember what is important.
Last week created some frustration for me because I found out that my fractured arm has not healed since I fell on it back in September. When I walked into the orthopedic clinic on Tuesday, I was going in with the expectation that the bone was fully healed and I could go back to using my arm normally again. However, when I walked out of that same clinic a short while later, I was frustrated to learn my body was not healing as anticipated.
I had my CT scan the next day and got an immediate phone call from the treating physician telling me that I needed to be referred to a hand specialist because I had a non-union. The next call I received advised me that I could not get in to see the specialist for four weeks… FOUR WEEKS… you gotta be kidding me?
Being the Expressive personality style that I am, I started talking about my woes. I talked to people at work… I talked to my husband… I talked to my mother… I talked to my Facebook friends because I felt the need to vent about my frustrations. The frustration of not being able to get back into my regular yoga routine and the dreams of riding my brand new Harley Davidson trike this Spring crashed to the ground before I could even learn to ride it. Oh yeah, I went into full pity-party mode for a day because I was frustrated and a wee bit angry at the darn situation.
Then I remembered what I had I had told myself earlier in the week… if this was my last day what would be important to me? Would I sit around just talking about my frustrations or would I be actively DOING something to take advantage of what time I had left?
So what did I do? I stopped talking and I started DOING! I took action, focusing on those things most important to me. I got on the phone and called a local orthopedic clinic to explain my situation, asking if there was any possibility to get into a hand surgeon more quickly than a month from now. I emailed my yoga instructor and told her to open up my spots in her classes for someone else who has been on her waiting list. I walked around my office and spent time engaged in conversations with co-workers. I went home and got my full-grown puppies to let them run while I walked around the local dog park. Finally, I ended my day relaxing with pizza and a movie with my husband.
Some interesting things happened once I started to take action:
- I got an appointment scheduled with a very experienced hand specialist for today!
- I received some amazing feedback about a staff meeting I held earlier in the week… feedback that the energy was great and that I should be a motivational speaker! For those of you who are leaders, that kind of feedback is what we strive for… to know we are motivating, energizing and making a difference for the folks we work with.
- When I walked around the dog park, I met new puppies and their owners. The joy of watching dogs of all ages, sizes and shapes running and playing with total abandon is beyond words and always a good reminder of how we humans should be taking advantage of our time… frolicking with the pack and playing without inhibition.
- I was also able to spend some time in quiet reflection as I walked nature’s wooded paths at the park.
Yes, if today were my last, I would spend less time talking and more time DOING. I would want to make the most of those twenty-four hours whether I am at home, at work, or at play…
If today were your last day (whether it is the last day of your job or the last day being with a family member for a while or your last day of vacation etc.) what would you stop talking about and what would you start doing instead?