Last week, a coworker shared with me a lesson from her morning devotional, and it’s stuck with me. On the days when things aren’t going as planned, don’t look at it as a bad day. Think of it as a little color added to your life. What a great change in perspective, and a thought that can be helpful to those caring for elderly loved ones.
It reminded me of those black and white photos with an element in color. Beautiful images, much more striking and interesting than the original. I’d like to live my life that way. Instead of sinking into negativity when things aren’t going like I want, enjoy the splash of color and the spark it’s bringing to life. Many valuable life lessons I’ve gained are from the colorful days. I thought I’d share a few in today’s blog.
Sometimes the only thing you have control over is your reactions. For those of us who are control freaks, when your day careens off track and takes the control out of your hands, alas all it not lost. There is always one thing you can still have control over – how you react. Whether you scream, cry or laugh, it’s your choice, and no one else’s.
Scars tell our story. You may have a scar you hate from a fall, a surgery, a burn. Whatever changed your skin happened on a colorful day. Don’t hate it. It’s just one part of your story. Figure out what that part of your story taught you – endurance, patience, caution. Then next time you see that scar, use it as a reminder of that. I am tough. I am brave. I fought a battle, and I’m still here.
Someday your pain might change someone else’s life for the better. Caregiving is not an easy job. You will have lots of colorful days. Sometime you may cross paths with someone going through the same struggles you once did. Sharing your experiences, tips or just offering words of encouragement may make all the difference in their lives.
Think of some of the influential people in history who used their pain to change lives. Oprah Winfrey was raised in poverty and was sexually abused for years. She has used her pain to help millions of others through her talk show, movies, radio, motivational books, magazines and philanthropy. Helen Keller lost her sight and hearing at the age of 1 1/2. Because of her pain, she went on to become a famous author and inspirational speaker. She stood up for the rights of people with disabilities and was influential in the founding of the American Civil Liberties Union.
As I prepared to write this blog, I learned how to manipulate these two color photos from Laurelbrooke Landing in Photoshop. They didn’t come about naturally. I read some tutorials and experimented. This is what we have to do with our perspective too. Some of you may be born optimists, but for those who struggle, it will take some learning and some effort to see a bad day as a splash of color in our lives. But what a difference it will make when you do!
Please feel free to comment below, and share insights you may have gained from some splash of color in your life.
– Dawn Wise
Director of Marketing and Communications
WRC Senior Services