Sunday, March 8, 2009
Copping an Attitude!
I just finished listening, for the third time, to a book I found a review of in Outside Magazine's Dispatches several years ago called Deep Survival, Who Lives, Who Dies and Why by Laurence Gonzales. I read the hardcover first and later got the audiobook. Love audiobooks. The book is about how to avoid getting into survival situations and what to do if you are in a survival situation. It is NOT a little pocket survival book by any means. It's a book you want to read now if you ever plan to step outside your front door and do anything in the world, and especially if you are planning to do things that tempt fate. Lots of examples of situations that people never dreamed they'd be in as they began their day (World Trade Centers disaster, airplane crashes, etc.) and also situations where going into them, the people knew there was a chance they might die (climbing, river rafting, etc.).
I have learned from this book what to do when something comes up suddenly that I have no experience in dealing and I start to panic. I have since been able to recognize panic (that deer in the headlights, I-wouldn't-know-my-own-name-if-you-asked-me panic), calm myself and figure out what to do. I've made decisions, based on what I've learned, not to do stupid things out in the wilderness just because the people I'm with try to shame me into it. I can't recommend this book highly enough to everyone.
Listening to it in this time when we're innundated with bad news from many media sources, I'm realizing that panic seems to be an effect many of us are feeling. So I thought it would be a good thing to remind all of us in this blog about one of the things Mr. Gonzales talks about in his book that can help quell panic. Positive mental attitude. I have a whole chapter in my book, Aging Lite, on attitude as it relates to health. In his book, Gonzales relates it to an important factor in survival. We need to survive this current situation our country and many other countries are facing.
It's tough to maintain a positive mental attitude about it if you continuously watch CNN, read all the news magazines, the newspapers, etc. It's too much! We should stay informed of course, but we can be informed in about 5 minutes a day. Maintaining a positive attitude is hard to do when you feed your brain bad news all day.
So let's get on with the business of living, helping others, doing our jobs, caring for our kids and knowing we will make it through this. This is only a season. Tons of positive things continue to happen in our world and even if this is a time of struggle for you, things will get better. The life of this little butterfly in the photo I took this weekend is at risk every moment, in every flight he takes, yet he still presses on. Yes, he doesn't really have much of a brain, but you know, sometimes we think too much and it leaves us paralyzed. We have to believe in ourselves, our families and believe in the strength we have through God. Never ever give up! Press on!