If you’re a regular reader you know that I love quotes that make me think. I found another one that I’d like to share.
It’s from English poet and philosopher Samuel Taylor Coleridge:
“Nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm.”
I spent at least a half hour today contemplating that quote. At first I set out to prove it wrong. I did this by making a mental list of all the great things in my life and the great things I’ve accomplished.
Without fail… everything great always came out of an enthusiastic effort. I guess Coleridge was on to something.
I’m about to start on a project. One that I’m unsure of. One that, to be honest, I’m a little skeptical of the outcome. This quote has me doing an attitude adjustment.
If I go at it half-hearted there’s no way I’ll be able to make it great. Go at it with 100% enthusiasm and who knows. Something great could happen.
It doesn’t matter if it’s a relationship, church committee, work project, whatever… whenever you want greatness choose to proceed with enthusiasm.
What’s the greatest thing you’ve accomplished and was it because you were enthusiastic about it?
This morning I was running late. Not terribly late. Just about ten minutes.
To add insult to injury my Keurig decided it didn’t want to brew so grabbing my normal cup of coffee on the way out the door was slowed.
Knowing that I needed coffee (and that I’d wonder all day if my Keurig was really broken) I spent a few minutes trying to get it to work. It finally brewed and I was out the door with a large travel mug of Dunkin’ Dark.
The first part of the commute I spent kicking myself for not being on time. I wondered if my day was going to get worse. Those thoughts were immediately erased as came upon a 3 vehicle accident. One of which was a large truck that was overturned.
The accident was fairly recent. It looked like everyone was OK but I realized their day had started a lot worse than mine.
News reports confirmed no major injuries AND that it happened at the time when I should have been there… if I wasn’t running late. There was a reason I was late today and it wasn’t because of my coffee maker.
The Lord is my light and my salvation—
so why should I be afraid?
The Lord is my fortress, protecting me from danger,
so why should I tremble? – Psalm 27:1
Ever have what seemed like a negative at the time turn into a blessing?
Yesterday was a bad day. Not the kind of bad day I’ll remember a week, month, or year from now. It was the kind where nothing seemed to go right. The kind where you just want to throw your hands up and ask for a “do over”.
Fortunately, I wasn’t able to go straight home after work. Otherwise I know I would have been cranky towards my wife and kids. I had already committed to helping a friend out. His family had moved to another state, are closing on the sale of their house later this week, and needed the lawn mowed. Per his suggestion, I agreed to mow it in exchange for the snow blower he left behind.
The yard hadn’t been mowed yet this Spring and was really uneven. Some parts were really short. In other parts the grass approached mid-calf to knee level. I jokingly told my friend afterward that it was a good thing I liked him and hated to shovel snow because I was tempted to drive away when I saw how tall it was in places.
So I started to work on the lawn. After the day I had I wasn’t in the mood to listen to the radio or podcasts. So I mowed listening to the dull hum of the mower engine through my ear protectors. For two hours I mowed, sweated, and let my mind wander.
It was the best thing I could have done. The first half hour I’ll admit that I was still upset about my day but the more I worked all that faded away. I started to think about my family and how blessed I am. My thoughts drifted towards my blog and new ideas and goals I have for it. I also thought about the podcast I’d like to start.
By the time I was done the stress of my day had been erased and replaced with a sense of accomplishment.
Yesterday taught me that the best way to get over a bad day is with a little sweat and time to let my mind wander.
What are some ways you cope with a bad day?