Status Quo? Not Me!
I’m supposed to write about something that will stir a debate. I sent a writing buddy a text and said:
I don’t think I can do today’s challenge. I don’t write to stir trouble.
Her response caught me off guard.
I think you do already…believe it or not! You already stand up and say writing and celebrating doesn’t have to be what we think it is.
As much as I tried to remain in my uncontroversial bubble, her words kept swarming me. I asked Andy, “Do you think I’m controversial in my writing? Do I poke at tradition and push conventional beliefs?”
He laughed, nearly choking on his drink. “You have to ask?”
He looked over at me and realized I wasn’t joking. This made him laugh again. “You’re always pushing people to move out of their comfort zones. You spin these stories that are just ordinary moments that make people smile or soften and then you give a little twist at the end that makes us pause and think about our own lives in a new way. Yeah, you push convention.”
“I’m not mean!” I hear the defensiveness in my own voice.
“No, you’re not mean. You’re also not status quo.” He shakes his head again. “Like you don’t know it.”
I shrugged. “I’m just writing truth.”
He laughed, “That’s why I love you. You speak the truth, whether people want to hear it or not. You just kind of lay it out, no sugar coating.”
This time it was my turn to laugh. “So what are you saying? I have strong beliefs?”
“It’s all part of the package,” he teased. “Low maintenance, but you say it how you see it.”
And this is how I see it:
I’m a little worn out by all of the complaining and nagging and whining that fills our days. My ears hurt from people wishing their lives were easier, less complicated, or more blessed. I’m tired of hearing about how busy and overwhelmed everyone is — all of the time.
Because here’s the deal:
It’s all about the perspective. I can complain about the laundry, or I can celebrate having a healthy and active family. I can crab about doing dishes again, or I can celebrate the home cooked, delicious, plentiful meal. I can grumble about the papers, books, iPads, paper airplanes, milk glasses, and back packs on the kitchen table or I can celebrate that the kitchen table is not just a dumping ground, but a gathering place every afternoon.
I turn each complaint inside out all day long. When someone snaps at me, I’m glad they trust me enough to shoulder their frustration and be kind anyway. When I’m cut off while driving, I’m thankful I was paying attention and avoided an accident. When I’m sore from exercising, I’m grateful I had time for an extra mile the night before.
When I choose to celebrate, I no longer have space for complaining. Celebration is my catalyst for caring about others, for being kind, and for making the world a better place. Everyone has something to celebrate. Let’s start today!
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Oh wow, Andy has you figured out! I love that our Celebrate this Week post helps us to find something to celebrate every single week, even when it's a gritty celebration.
Do I need to send Jeff Goins a thank you note for setting this challenge in your sights? I so love your thinking and the way you make life better by sharing your perspective of the world through celebration. There is no debate from the Ruth Ayres fan club, you touch lives with your words, whether they are gritty or not. Loved the dialogue between you and Andy! I celebrate that you did not turn comments off. I need to be able to tell you my thinking.
This is a great post! You need to share it with the WORLD!!!! Everyone needs to hear this and I'm so glad that I'm not the only one who feels this way, but sometimes I need to be reminded. 🙂
I agree with Andy 150 percent you are controversial in the way a leader and a teacher should be. You present an idea outside of the box and then give everyone space to walk around and think about how it fits in their lives. I also appreciate the opportunity to interact with you today.
“When I choose to celebrate, I no longer have space for complaining.” I think I want this line on a tshirt!