Something fun to start your week
In my 20s, I applied for a job at a small book publisher in Los Angeles. I convinced myself that it was the PERFECT job. I would help edit books, write the back-cover blurbs, and I can’t remember what else. But it was all very good.
I did a few rounds of interviews and got more excited with each one. “It’s down to you and one other candidate,” they told me. And then…
I didn’t get the job.
I was so upset. It was terrible news.
I ended up accepting a different job, and guess what: THAT’S THE JOB where I met my husband. So actually, it was FANTASTIC that I didn’t get that publishing job.
Sometimes things that seem bad turn out to be good.
So when you get bad news or encounter a setback, here are two thought experiments you can try:
#1: Nesting Dolls
If something “bad” happens, think of it like a nesting doll. The situation doesn’t look good at first glance. That’s the outer nesting doll.
But maybe in time, you’ll discover a second nesting doll under that one… and that second nesting doll will be better. It was just hidden at first, so you couldn’t see it.
#2: Wrapping Paper
Another way to think about this: Imagine someone hands you a present that’s wrapped in weird, negative-looking wrapping paper.
But then, once you take the time to unwrap the box, you discover another box with more positive wrapping paper.
It took a little time to uncover that positive wrapping paper, but it was there waiting for you.
Note: These thought exercises won’t stop you from being sad when something disappointing happens. It sucks when you encounter a setback or bad news, and you will feel upset.
But in some little corner of your brain, just remind yourself: Maybe things will eventually turn out better than you think. Or maybe there’s a hidden benefit that you just can’t see now.
Maybe life will surprise you.
In fact, even as you’re disappointed, you can think that to yourself: “Maybe life will surprise me.”
Then take a deep breath and let life unfold. Chances are, it WILL surprise you.
I hope you have a great week ahead!
All the past Monday Motivations