TV is one of my many guilty pleasures. And after a day full of sessions with my clients, where I laugh and cry with them, it’s nice to come home and unwind. But no matter what I watch, I’m always picking up new insights and perspectives about life.
Tonight is no different. The Bachelor is on while I finish up my day. And as I watch 26 women fight for the attention and love of one man (THANK GOD I’m not the staff therapist for that TV show), I see some lessons for all of us.
Learn to read and believe the moments along the way that tell you it’s OK to trust.
Before the competition for one man’s heart narrows to the final few, there are two dozen women vying to receive a rose. The girls have some really wonderful moments one-on-one with the bachelor, where all of the obvious signs point to his interest in her. And even with those tender, heartfelt moments where there is definitely a connection, they still freak out and panic right before a rose ceremony as they wonder if it was enough.
How does this relate to daily anxiety? There are so many things in our lives that are going OK. There are so many signs that everything is falling into place. Yet, we doubt it. We wonder if we’re that lucky for something good can actually happen to us. Other people tell us that we’re doing a good job as a student/parent/employee/daughter/significant other. And yet, we don’t believe it. And the butterflies in our stomach multiply and we lose sleep and can’t concentrate- all over something we already have signs are true.
Enjoy those magical moments as they happen, instead of worrying about “What-if.”
Dates on The Bachelor are over the top. Where else can you travel the world, have a helicopter pick you up for a date, or have an entire theme park to yourself? And during those magical, once in a lifetime moments, the girls are worrying if they are enough to get a rose.
How does this relate to daily anxiety? Life is made up of moments. Each one of those moments creates the storyboard of our lives. But so many of those moments we forget. Or we pray those moments will hurry up and pass by. But what about those special moments? Often, we’re so worried about something else to enjoy what’s happening right then. Have you ever been at your child’s birthday party, but instead of savoring the look of their face, you were worried about cleaning up the mess, running out of food, or why one kid is crying? Have you ever been with your boyfriend enjoying a nice, quiet evening together, but instead your stomach was in knots thinking about tomorrow’s exam or the meeting with boss? Don’t worry too much to enjoy the magic now.
In life, we don’t get to choose whether or not we experience anxiety. But we do get to choose how to react to it. Knowing that anxiety affects everyone helps to connect the gap during those nervous moments. But focusing on the magical moments as they happen and learning to trust the good things go a long way.