Food for Thought: Seeing Something Good, Even When It’s Bad

The CrossFit Open exposes your weaknesses.  It may come up every WOD, but there will be at least one where you hear the announcement and think: "F that!"  This quick read from Mentality WOD is a good check in for any gripes rolling around in your head.

Gratitude and positivity. You hear about them all the time. See, it’s easy to be thankful when things are goin' great. You feel happy and you see the good all around you. Most people can be thankful when the day is going how they want it to, or they’re experiencing something amazing. Yet, it’s likely a different story when the day is full of disappointments, letdowns, frustrations, and heartaches. Not so easy to be appreciative then is it?

Ever been sick, incredibly angry, injured, depressed, or anxious? These aren’t typically fun experiences or states.

Ever been in the hospital, in an accident, deployed, or in some kind of tragedy? These situations and places aren’t generally “happy” ones to be in.

There are times in life when it feels like there just isn’t much to feel good about.

It’s like being at a funeral, it’s fucking terrible right? We all know that. But then, there are these beautiful moments hugging your brother or your friend, and you’re so thankful for them at that moment. They are making the horrible not as horrible as it could be. You may appreciate the food that you get to eat that day, the memories that you’re able to smile about, the flowers that brighten up the room, or the gifts that relationship brought to your life. No, appreciation for small things won’t suddenly make you feel like you’re celebrating a wedding. It won’t make the pain go away. Seeing the good, doesn’t dismiss the bad…it just helps us stay aware.

You can find something to appreciate even in the dimmest situations. The clothes that you’re able to wear, the breath that you’re able to take, the simple fact that you can experience emotions, the colors all around you, the hopeful message you heard, the warmth that you feel, the protection you have, the choices you can make, or the parts of yourself or your loved ones that are still functioning and healthy.

It doesn’t have to be all bad or all good, it can be both. In fact, it’s always both. There are horrible things happening RIGHT now, and there are amazing things happening RIGHT now. At the same time. Both. It’s never all good or all bad. It’s about developing the ability to keep your eyes open. You can train yourself to feel pain, AND acknowledge blessings, giving hem both space.

Bottom Line? You can feel deep pain, anger or discomfort, and also see beauty, love, hope, guidance, strength, inspiration, and simple joys. You will still suffer, ache, hurt, and feel frustrated and upset. Those aren’t feelings you want to rush or push away. Work on accepting the pain, allowing yourself to feel it deeply, and also on being aware that there is always something to be thankful for…that’s what we’re going for.