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10/03/2011 - VP's Message - Sept/Oct

 "Don't worry, be happy
Listen to what I say
In your life expect some trouble
But when you worry
You make it double
Don't worry, be happy...”

Bobby McFerrin

I recently met an old friend for dinner, and as our conversation turned to family and work, she began to tell me of an epiphany she had while listening to old music.  She said that one day she was worrying about how she would "fix” several potential problems at home and at work when she heard Bobby McFerrin singing his song, "Don’t Worry, Be Happy.”  In the song, Bobby tells the listeners that we all can expect conflict in our lives, but worrying doubles the trouble.  She said as she listened to the song she began to wonder, so what if one of the potential problems happened, would it truly be a tragedy? Was she placing too much importance on something that may never come to pass?  She said she knew conflicts would always come her way, but the question would be whether or not she controlled the conflicts or they controlled her.  In our personal and professional lives, I think these are questions we should all ask ourselves.

If you are alive then you are going to have conflict in your life.  In our home life and in our chosen profession, we find conflict.  You can call it a conflict, a problem or issue, but no one is immune and no one is exempt.   Conflicts can vary greatly.  Sickness or loss of a loved one is near the top of the list.  A flat tire is near the bottom.  We all assign different names to these conflicts from "tragedy” to "bummer”. The trick is how you deal with the conflicts you face.

Panicking solves nothing – never has – never will.  But the killer, the slow death that affects us all during our time of conflict is worry.  Despite the undeniable fact that the conflict will resolve one way or another and everything changes over time we still worry about things.   Some worry over every possible thing during every second of every day.  Worry is in the long run a much greater problem than anything else you are worried about.

What we need is a change in perspective.  We must look at our conflicts in a different way.  Taking an analytical view, we can dissect our conflicts into their proper sections, Cause – Effect –Resolution.  Once the cause of the conflict is identified you know the reasons for your concern.  The effect on you and the people in your lives can be observed and once observed, managed. Resolution may or may not be in your control but at least it will be identified and the fear not knowing how things should resolve will disappear.

Finally – and this is the best part – no matter what the conflict/problem/issue is, it will go away. Circumstances change, people move on, debts are paid or become uncollectable – whatever.  You will live through it.  You may or may not believe in destiny, but whether it or is not true, your life is your life.  You assign what meaning you will to the conflicts in your life.  It is your decision whether or not they control you or you control them. Do not give problems control of your life.  You choose how to live it.  Accept that power and no conflict will hold you down.

Don’t Worry – Be Happy!
 
Tracy Kelly,  Vice President
SWFPA