You’re driving along, minding your own business, and some jackass comes in front of you and cuts you off, then slams on the brakes.
You’re totally fine, but still it upsets you. Quite a bit actually. Except, why? Why are you upset? What wrong has actually been inflicted? Is your car damaged? Are you bleeding?
All that’s really wrong is your ego and your adrenline. It was almost bad, so you’re reacting like it was bad. But it wasn’t. You could feel relieved and grateful just as easy. I got so lucky instead of That asshole almost killed me.
No one is saying this is easy to do in the moment. But it is worth thinking about if you’re still stewing hours later. Consider what Marcus Aurelius meant when he said, “Choose not to be harmed — and you won’t feel harmed. Don’t feel harmed — and you haven’t been.” Our lens on these things, after we’ve calmed down, is what determines what they mean and how we feel. And isn’t it better to not feel harmed?
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