Video – VLog #64
How can we accept what’s happening to us?
How can we learn not to be upset by what life throws at us?
How do you accept what you cannot change?
Script – VLog #64
David Logan: Hi and welcome to another week of The Techno Dinosaur Meets The I.T. Geek. Techno Dinosaur being Willie, I.T. Geek – me, David Logan, based here in Annan, Dumfries and Galloway, Scotland, U.K.
David Logan: I take the jargon out of technology for you the home-based office worker to make it work simple. So, Willie, how are you and where are you today?
Willie Nicol: Hi David, I’m very well thanks. I am Willie Nicol, the Techno Dinosaur – so named because I’m digitally challenged. I’m also a personal development life coach. I’m based in Troon, South Ayrshire, Scotland, U.K.
David Logan: Fantastic. Today’s question for you Willie – how can we accept life’s events as they happen, acceptance?
Willie Nicol: Very good question David. Acceptance is quite a wide topic. How can we accept what’s happening to us? How can we accept all that life throws at us? How can we learn not to be upset by what life throws at us?
Willie Nicol: I’ll start off by referring to The Serenity Prayer, which was written by a German pastor in 1840 something and a couple of lines from it are as follows, which I’ve kind of tried to update a wee bit. It’s “Give me the grace to accept things I can’t change; give me the strength to change what I can change; and give me the wisdom to know the difference”.
Willie Nicol: So, that essentially means that the things we can’t change or control – we have to accept them. The things we do have control or the ability to change, we should be strong enough to do that. But we should also be wise enough to know which is which. So, trying to change things over which we have no control, i.e. we don’t accept, is a bit like knocking your head against a brick wall. It’s sore and it’s .…
David Logan: It can be very sore …
Willie Nicol: Quite so. So, we have to learn to accept that there are things that we can’t control or change. That’s just life and it’s especially pertinent now in the ongoing situation in which we find ourselves, which appears to have no end and becomes very frustrating. And that’s perfectly natural to experience frustration, stress and anxiety over this current situation and over which we have very little control. We just have to do as we’re told basically …. and we don’t like doing that, do we?
David Logan: No.
Willie Nicol: But we have to accept it because that’s just the way it is. And that’s very easy for me to say, accept what is. But trust me, when you learn how to do this, it makes life a lot easier. So, accept what you can’t change or control. However, what you do have control over, absolute control over, is the way you react to these things. So, on the one hand you have …. can’t change that or control it. On the other hand, you have …. yeah, but I can control or change the way I react to it.
Willie Nicol: So, if we’re becoming frustrated, annoyed or angry about the current lockdown restrictions, it’s futile because they are what they are. We either ignore them and break the rules or break the law or we stick with them. And that’s why we have to learn to accept what’s happening round about us. The control aspect we can change or control is how we react to it. “OK, not happy with this, bit frustrated, bit stressed but I acknowledge that I can’t change them, therefore I know that I have to accept it”.
Willie Nicol: Does that make sense?
David Logan: Absolutely, makes great sense, yes.
Willie Nicol: And that sense of acceptance and the acknowledgement that we can’t change what we can’t change, right, leads to a much calmer frame of mind. I remember, in the not too distant past, where I would try and change things because I wanted them to change. And as I said earlier, it was like knocking your head off a brick wall you got nowhere. All you ended up with was a ‘sare heid.’ As Einstein is alleged to have said – “The definition of insanity is trying to do the same thing over and over again in the same way and expecting a different result”. So, like banging your head off a wall, all that happens is the wall doesn’t suffer, you do.
Willie Nicol: So, you have to accept what’s going on round about you with as much grace as you can, as The Serenity Prayer says, because you can’t change it. And once you learn to do that, trust me, it makes life a lot simpler, a lot less stressful and a lot less worrisome, if you like.
Willie Nicol: Like most things that we try and do, it takes a wee bit of effort, takes a wee bit of time, takes a wee bit of “getting your head around”. But I have learned from personal experience that accepting what I can’t change or control, with as much grace as I can muster, has been very beneficial for my calm, serenity, peace of mind, whatever you want to call it.
David Logan: Love that word – serenity.
Willie Nicol: Yes, I do like serenity or as I’ve called my business …. contentment. You can’t go into Tesco and buy a jar of contentment, right. People say, “Well, that’s a kind of nebulous concept, what is contentment?” Well, if you have to ask that, you don’t know what you’re talking about. Let me put it this way, contentment might be something you can’t describe but you certainly know when you don’t have it. When you’re trying to change things you can’t change, when you’re not accepting the things you can’t control, you aren’t going to get any contentment. But, trust me, once you’ve realised what I’ve just said, contentment is eminently achievable and again trust me, contentment is where you want to be.
David Logan: So, in a nutshell, it’s about behaviour and how we react to situations we can’t control.
Willie Nicol: Very much so, it’s behaviour …. I would probably go more with mindset. If you adopt a mindset that, I will accept what I can’t control or change because I can’t control or change it, right. And in so doing, right, I have chosen, because we always have a choice. I have chosen to react in that manner. So, I have control over that. That is my choice how I react. So if you jump up and down, stamp your feet, spit your dummy out because there’s things you can’t control or change, is that going to make a difference? No. Will it make you feel better? No. Is it going to achieve anything? No. So, kind of obviously learning how to accept what is with as good grace as you can muster and just get on with things that you can change and control. It’s much more fulfilling, serene, calm, relaxing, contented and I’ve learned that and I’m a much happier bunny now that I used to be. So I’m living proof.
David Logan: So, from one bunny to another bunny, we’ll close at that then Willie, very good. Thank you for that, for sharing your views on accepting what life throws at us.
David Logan: I’ll just say to you the viewer, if you can’t accept it, speak to Willie, reach out to him, speak to him, drop a comment below or send us a private message, keep it confidential. We’ll keep things confidential between the two of us, we’ll ….some stuff. No, honestly, we will keep it confidential to you the home worker.
David Logan: Any technical issues give me a shout, I’m your I.T. Geek, not the I.T. King …. yet. So, enjoy yourself, have fun, see you next week everybody.
Willie Nicol: Thank you David. Yes, reach out to me if you have a wee bit of a problem understanding this concept. Happy to have a chat. In the meantime, I’ll reiterate what David says …. stay safe, stay well and have some fun, it’s summertime. Bye for now.