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You ever wake up, looking forward to your day, and then get a phone call, email, or text that upends everything? Yeah, you know those days, right? The days you wish you would never have gotten out of bed, or called in sick to binge watch Netflix or get on your XBOX and get in some Call of Duty.

The key to getting through these days is to realize how important our attitude is. All of us get these “little surprises”. They are as common as breathing. So what do I mean by attitude?

Our attitude relates to how we deal with these surprises. Do we take them in stride or do we let them blow away our whole day, week, or month?

What I have found to be most effective is to not react so quickly. Take some time to understand what this surprise is asking of you. Do you need to fill out a form, make a phone call, or seek someone’s council? Decide what you need to do with whatever you got blindsided by. It may be as simple as marking a date on a calendar to revisit when you can do something about it. In other circumstances, you may need to sit down and put together a plan of action.

This planning phase takes a lot of “edge” off of the surprise and gets you thinking about how to solve the problem or finish this new task. The less emotion you are, the better. Just start brainstorming for ideas, write them down, decide which action makes the most sense, and plan out a course of action.

The next time you get blind-sided by something, take your time. Let the initial emotional reaction subside. Then think. You’ll find you always have a solution available.

Until next time…