Dr. Deb’s Mental Health Vitamin: Making the best of today
By Dr. Deb Wade
GCU Vice President, Counseling and Psychological Services
“The best is yet to come!”
Likely, all of us have heard that expression and have cherished the sentiment because it relates to hope and blessings for the future. But have you ever had a wakeup call when what you know collides with what you’re living … only to realize that they’re not lining up in sync? Let me explain:
My husband and I recently were returning home from a men’s basketball game; the trip was going to be about 3½ hours, our bellies were screaming for food and the traffic was rather heavy.
We decided to get farther down the road before we started looking for a restaurant. We saw a grouping but decided that, possibly, there were better options ahead. So we kept driving.
Then we saw another cluster of fast-food restaurants but again decided there had to be better options ahead. So we kept driving.
We did this in two more populated areas but said to one another, “Nah, there are better options ahead.”
Well … guess what? Yep, we drove completely out of the options and ended up at a … TRUCK STOP (where we had a bag of peanuts and a candy bar). Clearly, we were so focused on options ahead that we neglected to value what was right in front of us … ugh!
On this, the final “Vitamin” of 2018, I wanted to offer some food for thought. We can truly look ahead and find that the best is yet to come. In fact, the Bible tells us so.
“No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those who love Him.” (1 Corinthians 2:9)
At the same time, we must set about enjoying the reality of the moment we are in. The Bible addresses that, too.
“This is the day the Lord has made. Rejoice and be glad in it.” (Psalms 118:24)
Knowing this, some thoughts for your consideration:
- Take a Self-Inventory! As you close out 2018, inspect your relationships – are they rich with value and reciprocal in nature? Look at your self-care – do you have balance between work and play, boundaries to protect your personhood, and time healthiness rather than time bankruptcy?
- Set Out to Dream BIG … but Celebrate Small Wins along the Way! True contentment comes from the celebration of the victories in life – the huge ones AND the small ones. Let’s not look so far ahead that we don’t see the beauty, the accomplishments and the blessings around us!
- Get into Your Own Head! Are you guilty of negative forecasting? Do you worry, fret and perseverate over things in the future (over which no one has any control), only to realize that it is disrupting the beauty of the NOW? I believe that we can all fall into that trap. Let’s get into our own heads and clean out all negative and gloomy forecasting!
- Put on Your Game Face! We will run through the finish line of 2018 and hopefully run with gusto into 2019! Put on your best “uniform,” your best “game face,” and be ready to champion in the new year with confidence – and a little bit of swagger!
- Glance Back and Cherish Fond Memories; Look Ahead at the Myriad Opportunities That Beckon; But Most Importantly, Relish the NOW, the Moment You are Currently in … and Give Thanks for All of Those “Looks.” The moment of NOW is great! The future is promised to be the BEST! We are lucky ducks!
As you cross the finish line of 2018, reflect and celebrate! As you stand on the threshold of 2019, reflect and celebrate! We are a blessed people! Happy New Year! The Best is Yet to Come!