Let’s put things in perspective

I just read a great ezine post by Joe Carabase, aka America’s Fitness Coach for Busy People that offered a nice alternative to the story Halloween Horror Story: The Case of the Missing Pumpkin Lattes  in the  Wall Street Journal about the Pumpkin Spice Latte shortage at Starbucks.

The article chronicalled the impact said shortage had on patrons discovering that they would be denied their favorite drink.

The emotional devestation caused by this disaster was captured in quotes such as these:

“I just left, depressed.”

“My world almost ended this morning when the local Starbucks told me they were out of Pumpkin Spice Latte”

Now, to Joe Carabase’s ezine, where he talks about the importance of mind-set and perspective, and shares the story of World War II hero Eddie Richenbacker, who spent 3 weeks in a life raft lost at sea during WW II.

Please pause for a moment and try to imagine what that must have been like. In addition to the physical pain of starvation, dehydration, and being scorched by the sun, the soul-crushing experience of hour after hour with nothing to do but wonder how death would come, while hoping for a miracle.

His answer to the question of what his biggest lesson was?


“The biggest lesson I learned was that if you have all the fresh water you want to drink and all the food you want to eat, you ought never to complain about anything.”

I’ve heard similar comments from people who have survived life threatening illnesses and combat.

They stopped sweating the small stuff.

One of the ways my friend Bonnie and I remind each other about putting things in perspective is to invoke Jack Bauer, the hero of the TV series 24 who has to deal wiht more trauma in one 24 hour span of time than most people do in a lifetime. (Yes, I know he’s a TV character, but you get the point :-)).

To get ourselves or each other out of a funk due to a difficult day, we’ll jokingly say “Well…at least we’re not getting shot at like Jack”.

Are there things right now that you’re making into more of a big deal than they need to?

Would you benefit from putting them into perspective?

If so, maybe you can start with the Eddie Richenbacker quote or think of stories of courage and resilience that remind you to not sweat the small stuff.

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