Transformative Thursdays: Making Lemonade Out of Lemons

We all have those days when we are dealt a batch of lemons…we lose our keys and are 2 hours late for work, we have a flat tire on the way to school drop offs, the babysitter cancels at the last minute for your date night, you flunk a test you spent hours studying for or you’re missing the last ingredient you need to bake a cake for your child’s class party. Any of these situations can throw us into a tailspin and a whirlwind of emotions. However, life happens and it’s up to us to decide how we will react. Will we see the glass a half-empty or half-full? Will we choose to find the positive in the situation or complain about what we cannot change?

Making lemonade is always a good choice. Take your lemons and make the best lemonade you can. You may even surprise yourself and make a lemonade masterpiece. This attitude has to become your mindset if you want to be successful in life. No one can make you have a bad day. You CHOOSE to have a bad day.

So a few weeks ago, I was planning my birthday celebration. I planned to have a nice weekend with my husband and children. Well, a couple weeks before my birthday weekend, my husband had an engagement come up that was beyond his control. He would be absent for my birthday—the first time in 16 years. I was cool. I figured we would celebrate another time so I decided to plan something nice for the kids since it was Valentine’s weekend. We spent the day in another town and did two of our favorite things—shopped and ate.

After a fun day, we headed home and I went to a banquet (which I had a difficult time finding a babysitter for the kids on Valentine’s night). After successfully making it to the banquet, my husband calls and says the brakes have gone out on the car. So after the banquet, I spent the last few hours of my birthday going to pick him up which ended up making for 350 miles I had driven that day. I could have been upset that my plans didn’t work out and that my “celebration” was different from the original plan, but I CHOSE a different attitude. The circumstances were beyond my control and rather than get upset, I could be happy.

Now I realize this is a “trivial” situation and there are much bigger situations we face in life that are more difficult to make lemonade out of, but the principle remains the same. If you learn to make lemonade in the small things, you can make lemonade in the big things. I’ve learned to be happy (or find joy) in any situation. I am in control of my emotions. Because my husband and I have a wonderful relationship, we’ve learned the celebration can occur any day. It doesn’t have to be at Christmas or on my birthday, because we treasure each moment we have and make that a celebration. So, next time you’re dealt some really ugly and bitter lemons, find something positive about the situation and dwell on that. Choose to be happy and you’ll enjoy life a whole lot more!
~Coletta Jones Patterson

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