What does freedom mean to you? For some, it is strictly a political issue: how much freedom we believe we have or do not have from our government. For others, it has to do with choice: do we have the freedom to do what we want, when we want, no matter the cost (or the law)?
For me, though, Freedom is something that comes from within. It can’t be given, it can’t be taken, and we can choose it daily, particularly those of us who live in a free country.
How, you say, can I have it daily? Well, it’s a matter of being free to choose calmness, peace and serenity over frustration.
That’s right, I think that frustration (and impatience, and selfishness) enslave us to our own whims. What we need to do use our internal freedom to choose calmness in the center of any given storm. Now, I’m not saying this is easy – it’s not, but it is doable.
Let’s take yesterday. As mentioned it was not a good day. Neither, for that matter, was Wednesday. I was thoroughly tested, and the opportunity to be frustrated and lose my temper showed up multiple times. Did I give in? Yea, a few times, I’m sorry to say. BUT I did triumph by ending up with a calm, peaceful night, and some of that was caused by the fact that I know there are things out of my power. If I make 5, 10, 15 phone calls to get a document I need, and I still can’t get it – that is out of my power. I’ve done all I can do, so there is no need to freak out.
Let’s face it, though. Most of my freaking out is NOT going to go to the person who caused me the stress. (Happens to you too, right? Do you yell out your boss, or do you wait til you get home, and get aggravated at your misbehaving kids or your imperfect spouse?) I can be calm and level in the face of horrible things, but the real test to having freedom over my emotions is letting it dissipate before I spread it to my loved ones. I’ve done it before, but it ain’t easy!
So truth time: what will YOU do this holiday weekend? Get frustrated by crowds, heat, traffic, and grills that won’t light, or, be free to enjoy the weekend? It’s only up to you…
From my family to yours, Happy Labor Day, all you American readers!