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  • Writer's pictureZouwy

Finding positive opportunities in negative events

When I was young, I used to be a person who had always the weeks, months and years planned: high school, bachelor, Erasmus, master degree - what, where and when, all more or less defined. Probably by 26 I would own a house, be married and have kids. If my future wasn't planned, I would feel anxious. Until one day, talking with my physio at that time, she gave me a speech I will never forget:

Why do you worry about something you can't control? you are now, here. But.. who knows in few months? there are so many events in life you can't control that will change all your future plans. Hence, is it worth to be worry about then when you are so young?

It directly clicked on my mind and it helped me flipping my mentality. She was right... not everything worked as I planned. I accepted each defeat and I moved forward.

“Planning is bringing the future into the present so that you can do something about it now.” ― Alan Lakein, author

I do believe in planning though, also nowadays. Having goals with a plan, while keeping yourself flexible. Why flexible? for the sake of your mental health, for instance. You must stay flexible to be able to steer your boat when unexpected winds and storms are coming towards you! Live the present, work for your goals and when, an event interferes in your way, stay open minded and have a work around.

Make the world stop! 1 week after elbow infection

I live under the "destiny philosophy": everything happens for a reason.

This mentality helps me staying strong, also when I feel like I am in an endless dark hole.

I would never expected, on that Saturday when I went to sleep, that next day I would wake up with elbow pain. Pain at the beginning, infection eventually... I had to reschedule the back bending and forearm balancing (funny huh? elbow infection, ideal for elbow stands ;-) ) workshop, cancel other classes and head to the hospital as fast as possible.

Then I rescheduled the whole week: ciao to all the events I was looking forward. Even if it was sunny, I wasn't (and still I am not) allowed to be outside. Then fever kicked in and together with the medication, I only slept and laid down in the couch almost the whole week. I was mentally and physically done.

My world stopped - the near future plans stopped - work stopped - exercising stopped - socializing stopped (well, Whatsapp and IG helped a bit not to hehe)

so, from having a super busy life, I went to having almost nothing on the agenda. Nothing.

And did I enjoy it?! oh yes. It gave me time to self-reflect on my life, my goals, what I would like to accomplish... and also what wasn't working on lately. This reflection also went on my career, my teaching, my social life and on many other topics. I felt indeed like doing a Vipasana.

I also had my downs, definitely - on Friday, during the checking at the hospital, I realized I couldn't extend my left arm. Which it meant: I won't be able to practice hand balancing the next weeks. I accepted by then that I couldn't do elbow stands. Therefore my hope was on the hands...

Now I know that I have a rehab journey ahead, which on the other token, I see it as an opportunity to start from zero with the right techniques I have learnt from my coaches and my physio. The pinching on the lower back is also gone: another opportunity to restart safely back bending. I also realized with my full time job and teaching, I couldn't train as much as I wanted - another opportunity to rethink on my schedule and set better priorities.


Turn negative events into positive opportunities

Lessons learnt during this week:

  1. If you have a little bound, scratch - open skin - keep disinfecting even if it looks it is healed. And cover it with plaster. Don't be Zohar ;-)

  2. Time is something we have and at the same time, we don't. What makes you flourish and thrive? allocate time on what makes your heart and soul happy, on those events that make your mind flow and help you complete one day your dreams (in case you have any - not having dreams is also fine).

  3. Staying socially connected in person and online increases the feeling to belonging to a community, having a meaningful life. Something I have with Flying dance and the Mongolian Contortion Center, and I missed it this week.

  4. "The best way to happiness is through using your own strengths and growing in your capacities as a person". Identifying where I want to grow, and putting my efforts and heart on it.

I hope this also inspires you to look at life from a positive side - finding opportunities in all events in life. Even if we don't like them...

Stay healthy!


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