How things are today is a product of the decisions we made in the past. The opportunity is to see the only way that the future will be different is to decide to act and think differently. You can’t use the same thinking to solve a problem that was created by that thinking.
For example, I’m playing a League of Legends game with a guy and he’s raging at me. I’m playing badly and he’s wondering why he always get stuck with bad players on his team. Then he says “I’m just going to disconnect now.” My teammate ends up talking with him and begging him to stay and then we end up winning the game.
Here’s an example of the behavior of the past has created a situation then the same behavior is creating the future. This guy I’m playing with probably has more raw skill at League of Legends than I do. Yet, he’s matched up with me because that of disconnecting and screaming at teammates. His raw skill is worth the same as my raw skill plus the way he handles the game.
If you’ve done something in the past to put yourself in the situation you’re in, the only way you’ll get out is by doing something different. You can’t do the same behavior you’ve done in the past if you want to get a different result. This presents an opportunity because when you’re willing to do a different behavior, you’re willing to forgive the past. You’re willing to say the past was the way it was so I can learn to do something different today.
I’ve had this problem a lot in the past. I’d get so mad at things and then do the same behavior to create them again. For me, this happened a lot with my drinking. I would get so frustrated with being sick and having a hangover then I’d be so mean to myself. I would complain and be so terrible to myself that the only way I could get away from that was to drink again.
I got stuck in this cycle of being frustrated with life and then doing the same thing and getting the same results. Then there’s a certain sickness to it where you even like to screw yourself over. I remember nights just knowing I was going to give myself a terrible hangover and thinking it was funny. Then the next day I didn’t think it was so funny anymore.
I’m grateful that I see if I want something different, I must do something different. I can’t do the things I’ve done before and expect to get a different result, that’s insanity. Seeing other people raging, it makes sense that you are where you are because of how you’re reacting to it. If I play the same way in League of Legends, then I can expect to keep getting matched up with the same teammates. I will get matched up with people who are better players, but who are frustrated and taking it out on the game.
I realize that if I keep playing League of Legends the same way, I’m going to keep getting the same result. I spent about an hour yesterday watching videos to try to learn some different ways to use the key bindings. I see I’ll keep getting the same thing if I keep doing the same thing. This works well when you like where you’re at. When you’re happy with where you’re at, you’ll keep getting the same thing. That’s what I do today.
I’m happy with my life so I keep doing the same thing. Yet, even being happy with my life I realize I can’t keep doing exactly the same thing. I must try new things all the time because there’s a certain frustration with doing the exact same thing over and over, it gets boring. It gets to be not worth experiencing. It gets to a point where you want life to be exciting again. Trying new things adds excitement to life where I can do the majority of the same things over and over again. I try new things just enough to make mistakes, learn from them, and try to do things better.
This gives me great peace of mind looking and seeing what other people are doing. As long as I was in a cycle of complaining and dragging life down, it bothered me every time others were doing well. When I’d get matched up with a person like this who was struggling in a game, I’d rage back at them. I would fight back with them whether they were right or not. Then sometimes I would invest too much effort trying to impress them even when I didn’t want to play a game with them.
I have a great example of this. My brother played a Starcraft tournament with my friends. They were critical of him beforehand about his skill at the game. My brother started playing Starcraft like crazy and then won the tournament with my friends. He even beat the person who had been most critical of him in the championship. He worked his butt off to impress someone that he didn’t even know or like.
That worked for him in a sense that he was able to impress the guy that criticized him. Yet, how often do we work hard for things in life that aren’t worth having? How many people work hard to get a nice car that impresses people they won’t ever meet or talk to? It impresses people they don’t even care about – people who see the car driving down the street.
I’m grateful today I see that if I want something better in my life, then I always have to act differently. How I’m acting is predictive of what I will get. I walked my dog yesterday in the neighborhood and everyone was nice and friendly. They were waving and smiling and genuinely seeming happy to see me.
When I wasn’t happy to see myself, no one else was happy to see me either. The nice thing is you don’t have to do it all yourself. If you realize that you’re struggling and you don’t know how to do better, that’s good. Other people will help you. If you’re stuck in a place where you can’t even see that you’re having a hard time, then it’s hard to do better. Today, I try to see that I’m struggling and frustrated as soon as possible. I just played a game of Call of Duty with a guy where you could play your teammates. I was playing really good in the game and then a teammate killed me and I apparently killed him first.
I could see me getting frustrated and blaming him, but that only lasted for a minute and I didn’t take it out on him. Then I sent him a message saying my bad. When people do that, I appreciate it.
It’s nice today I realize if I get in a spot where my default programming kicks in. I have to notice what’s going on or I will repeat the same cycle of complaining and being frustrated.
Today I pray to see how the past has given me the situation I have today. I pray to be at peace with it because I know I can use that to make different decisions right now. I pray today to be willing to ask for help when I see I’m having a hard time and I can’t seem to figure out how to get out of it. I pray that you have the same opportunity I do to see when you’re struggling and to be open to asking for help. I pray that you can be at peace when people around you are struggling and to have the ability to help them when they need it. Thank you for reading this. Have a great day.