Life Lesson From An Old Barn

I’ve got a friend with an old barn.  It’s a barn she’s really proud of and one she’s in the process of having restored.  She’s poured a lot of money, blood, sweat, and most recently tears into.

It’s been fun following the barn restoration progress online through pictures and Facebook posts.  A few weeks ago, on a Monday morning, I asked my friend how the progress was going and when she’d share more pictures.

Immediately, I could tell my questions hit a nerve as she looked like she wanted to cry.  Turns out she had gotten a letter from the city asking her to contact them about her barn restoration project.

That letter sent her mind racing wondering what they could want. She spent a long weekend with her mind taking her down every negative path possible.

I felt sorry for her because things like that have happened to me before.  I have a bad habit of “worst-first” thinking.

We talked for awhile about what the city could want. Lawyers, money, and frustration were discussed.  In the end, I shared a quote with her that I had heard Dave Ramsey say before on his radio show.

I said, “You can’t just ignore it.  You should just call and see what they want.  When you stick your head in the sand you expose your butt”.

“Thanks for that,” she replied. “I’ll give them a call”.

It wasn’t 15 minutes later that she came to me with a big smile and a hug.  “All they wanted was a timeframe on when the project would be done… and they want pictures for a magazine article!”

All the stress and negativity had been erased and the pride in her barn had returned.

My friend couldn’t believe all the time, energy, sleep, and tears she had wasted over the weekend worrying.  I could believe it… because like I said before… I’ve been there myself playing out worst case scenarios in my mind.

“Mind if I share this story on my blog?” I asked.  “It’s a good reminder for me to not fall into “worst- first” thinking and I’m sure others would appreciate the reminder too.”

“Absolutely,” she replied without hesitation.  “Hopefully it can help someone avoid the kind of weekend I just put myself through.”

So, the next time your mind starts into a negative spiral, do yourself a favor and remember this life lesson from an old barn.Old barn

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