I went ice-skating for the first time during a trip to Japan with my family recently. I have to admit that I was a bit scared of getting on the ice, since I had thoughts of falling and cracking my head. When my wife asked me to wear a helmet, I didn’t act like a tough guy like I usually do.
I put on the helmet.
When my skates touched the ice my heart started beating so hard I could feel my chest moving. I had both hands clamped to the handrail as I tiptoed on the slippery-wet surface. But then I started thinking about my roller blading days when I was a punk in middle school. I remembered those leg movements and tried to copy them on my ice-skates hoping this would get me moving forward.
Okay, it wasn’t Disney on Ice, but I was inching forward. Then I let go of the handrail. And after a few minutes I was doing 360 jumps!
Okay, not really…
But I was moving faster. And more importantly, I didn’t look like a 6 ft baby learning to walk in the middle of a Japanese audience. By the end of the day, my butt never touched the floor, and we had one of the best times ever as a family!
Can I get a Woot-woot?!
I never would have thought that the time I spent rollerblading as a kid would help me some 20 years later. This taught me that experiences we’ve had in the past — both good and bad — can help us in the future, so we can’t go through our day-to-day with sourpuss faces. You have no idea how that thing you’re doing now may help you in the future.
We can learn from all experiences — if we’re intentional about it. If we look for daily teachable moments there would never be a wasted experience. This reminds of when Dave Ramsey says,
“There’s no such thing as failing; there’s only learning.”
Those things you learned at that job you hated (or are currently in) might be reusable in the future, so go thru it with a positive mindset and it will make the experience better. We can’t predict the future, but if you embrace the different seasons of life with a positive mindset you’ll feel more confident and optimistic about where you’re headed. And when you’re positive, you open yourself up to more opportunities, so don’t be a sourpuss.
Your attitude is a choice.