I am stuck at the airport. Flight delayed. Most likely will miss my connection.
I quietly curse our city’s loss of a major airline hub. It makes traveling much more difficult.
What am I going to do with this unplanned extra time?
I have two options. First, get annoyed, upset, frustrated. I roll my eyes, look important and feel mad at the world.
Second option: Enjoy the Gift of Time. This is rare: unplanned time in my packed schedule. No meetings to attend. No patients to see. No phone calls to make.
I choose Option 2.
Take a Deep Breath
I take a deep breath and decide to savor this gift because I never know when I am going to receive it. Now that I have, I unwrap it slowly.
I look around and observe. People watching is forever entertaining.
I make a call to a friend, whom I haven’t spoken to in a while.
I go for a walk, adding steps to my daily log.
I stop at the newsstand and buy an indulgent magazine.
I swing by the coffee shop and try a different tea.
I sit and take a few slow, calming, breaths.
I write in my journal.
I smile and say hello to a stranger. We engage in casual conversation.
I people-watch again.
I get up and walk casually — I am in no rush — to a nearby restaurant and peruse the menu.
Now, I’m feeling relaxed
Ahh, much better. I’m smiling and feeling like I’m on vacation.
Resilience is seeing a challenge or frustrating situation as an opportunity. It is eliminating unnecessary, self-imposed drama. It is making a commitment not to sweat the small stuff.
I am late to somewhere but I am right on time here.