I’m originally from Nashville, the home of country music. Years ago, I was eating dinner with my family at our favorite Mexican place, La Paz. A tall woman walked in with a few folks, wearing a black trench coat and sunglasses. It was summer and night time.
If her intention was to blend in, she failed. She totally stuck out.
It took a moment, and then my brother and I gave a knowing look - that’s Wynonna Judd, part of the famous mother-daughter duo, The Judds. They were at the height of their career, so this was a genuine celebrity sighting. Alas, this was a time before smartphones so no photos, instead it lives on as a memory.
I’ve always been intrigued by her as she’s transparent in her interviews - her battle with addictions, relationship problems, fights with her mother and sister (actress Ashley Judd), and near death experiences.
In 2010, she was describing her travails and lessons learned in an interview with Oprah. She got to the heart of her pain. And then she said this line that has stuck with me ever since.
“I’m grateful to be anywhere. I used to wake up and say, ‘Oh, God, it’s morning.’ Now I say, ‘Good morning, God.’”
What a simple tweak in her language that made all the difference. I was struck by its simplicity.
We can wake up in our stories, or we can take a moment and choose gratitude.
I was going through a difficult time because I’d just moved to a new city, hadn’t found a community of friends, and didn’t have a job so was feeling particularly unmoored. Not in a space of gratitude.
I’m grateful for hearing that interview when I did because it served as an ah-ha moment and shifted my perspective. Wow, I get to live in an exciting new city, forge new friendships, and redefine what makes me happy professionally.
My situation was exactly the same - I just changed my perspective.
This is often the case, isn’t it? It’s not the external that needs to shift, it’s the internal. We attach so much meaning to our external circumstances.
“Happiness depends more on the inward disposition of mind than on outward circumstances.” - Benjamin Franklin
My invitation to you this week is to notice how you wake up every morning.
What thoughts are running through your head? Are you excited for the day? Or wish you could go back to sleep because dreading a zoom meeting or your long to-do list?
Take a few moments to observe your inner dialogue. Be curious. Then, ask yourself, is there another way to frame it that’ll better serve me?
I hope this simple shifting of language practice serves you.
Until next time, as always, be gentle & kind to yourself.
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