I do! I sat at my desk this morning to find a boatload of additional work piled on my head. You know how that happens?
And when the mountain has grown from the small hills by your home to Everest shooting 20,000 feet up into the clouds, well, what’s your first reaction? Mine tends to be the gnashing of teeth and running screaming from the room!
Which is a good way to start. Gotta let those emotions out. Whew.
Okay, now that the inner bratty child part has had its say, what now?
Ice cream, that’s what. For breakfast? If you want it.
Who’s to forbid you? You’re an adult, right? And yes, if you’re a functioning adult, that child voice gets immediately answered by the harsh overlord of the psyche (the superconscious, in therapeutic terms). It also has a function, but when replying to the inner child, it can be in a voice harsh with shoulds and musts and have tos. That’s its job. Preachy, at best. But depending upon early modeling, that voice can be nasty indeed.
And though both of those functions do need to be heard (if you stuff them, woe be to you!), neither is the decision maker.
Because while letting your inner child soar is a great thing, this morning isn’t quite the right time to go fly a kite. This weekend, maybe . . . Nor do you need to beat yourself up for wanting to do just that.
You’re human, after all. And even the most spiritual of gurus on the planet, living or or dead, had very human reactions rather than spiritual ones at junctures in their stories. Even Jesus had anger well up as he crashed over the money-changers’ tables. That always makes me feel better 🙂
When I need a new perspective (after letting the other two voices have their say), it’s time to call the adult into the room. The mediating part of us, who has learned and grown and dealt with oh-so-many problems in the past. You know that one—the voice now and then who speaks in your mother’s tone. But in essence, is a being of your own making.
And you’ve worked hard all these years to hone that voice, no? Whether through therapy or spiritual guidance (which mirror each other if all works healthily), self-help literature or sitting cross-legged around a campfire with friends and a bottle of wine, whichever paths you have walked down to deal with the neurosis within (which we all have!), by this time that inner adult voice is to be trusted.
It’s where intuitive guidance filters through as well, when you can quieten the world enough to listen.
And if that voice says, “Sure, go have ice cream for breakfast,” then go and have it.
Of course, now that I’ve given it the permission to assess the situation and speak, I’d rather have eggs 🙂
But how to cheer up the psyche is uniquely your path. By digging down and finding those parts of yourself, getting to know them as you would a character in a story, they’re at your service when insanity comes calling.
Because insanity will of course come calling. If you’re engaged in life, working toward a goal, fighting the good fight—whatever that means to you—craziness comes in one form or fifteen. That just got encoded into pieces of the human play, as soon as we could walk upright.
Just knowing that eases my mind as well. This is a well-worn path, no? Others have traveled it before us, have succeeded or failed to try another day. The world won’t cave in if we don’t get everything done on that ever-increasing list.
But in the end, the goal is still in sight, no? Even though a setback may have occurred, or the road ahead just headed straight upward, we’re still in the game. And when that’s the case, one thing I know for true is that the goal itself will propel us on.
Or as teacher Robert Cooper said in The Other 90%: How Unlock Your Vast Untapped Potential for Leadership & Life, “It takes great goals to lead us out of our everyday limits into accomplishing more than we ever thought we could or would.”
Have you had your ice cream this morning?