Feeling Great! Newsletter

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Great Expectations

I'm writing today from the armchair of the "recovery recliner." I had sinus surgery last week. In preparation for surgery I used visualization and healing affirmations. I had every expectation that surgery would go smoothly and my week off would be loaded with productive time.

Well... that must have been the dream right before the alarm clock chimed in, playing a tune all its own! Instead, I've probably gotten all of 8 good hours of sleep since surgery (5 days ago) and my face feels like a pancake the size of Texas! 

I smile a bit as I dust off of all the positive preparation, and I wonder, "Did I set myself up with all these positive expectations?" Or should I say, "unrealistic expectations?"

What happens when we expect the best and something far less happens? Speaking for myself I can say self-pity goes a long way (grin). It also felt God had let me down a bit too. In my mind, I turned it over (or did I?) and God let the ship go down on His watch. Interesting perspective isn't it? I also gave a thought to how overrated all this positive thinking stuff is!! Humbling to admit, but these thoughts were dancing in my tired head. I'm writing about them because I don't think I'm too unique. In fact, I strongly suspect we all have these sorts of doubts and challenges in our lives.

I won't go into the details of sinus surgery recovery but let's just say it's actually going as well as the surgeon knew it would. I just had other expectations!

So, it seems we can set ourselves up with negative or positive expectations. Go wonder! And so where do we go from here?

With my initial expectations foiled, I'm at what I call a "choice point." I expected too much. I admitted that, accepted it and have decided what is reasonable for me to expect the remainder of the week. 

I'm simply unable to build 3 websites, start a phone counseling practice for my colleagues or even focus on reading a book I wanted to finish this week.

What can I do? I can successfully treat myself with respect. How can I do that? I can sit in the recliner, rest and watch TV shows which require no brainpower. I can allow my body to heal and give my mind a rest. Ah, yes... the week is beginning to turn around now. I'm going to start my week over as of right now.

What's the take away? Far too many to count. I would like to say that it's always best to choose to expect the best outcome. In fact, I would continue to stand behind it 100%. Then we have to factor in Life, which has a way of showing up and performing it's own original dance. 

This week sort of felt like dueling banjos. I took a turn, was fairly impressed with myself and as I finished my last chord, Life started playing it's own tune. It finished and I was left to respond. What tune will you play in response to life's?

Dave Turo-Shields (email)
Veteran Psychotherapist, Trainer & Life Coach

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