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When Missing the Train Ruins Your Whole Day

Benefit #3: Positivity Makes Us Healthier

Benefit #3: Positivity Makes Us Healthier

Back in the early ‘90s, I worked the overnight shift for a time at a major NYC law firm. I was one of the few heading home to New Jersey as everyone else was on their way into the office. I still remember an incident when a burly man in a gray pinstripe suit missed his train by seconds. He got there just as the doors were closing – no doubt a very frustrating experience. But his reaction was seismic. He pounded the doors with his fists, cursed loud enough for me to hear him across the tracks, and his face turned so red it looked as if his head might literally pop off. Maybe he’d missed an important meeting, or perhaps this was just his regular way of handing irritations. Regardless, it was probably unhealthy for him.

A few years later, after I’d relocated to Phoenix, I was working with a client who was in a time crunch and urged me to get what she needed ASAP. I was talking with a third party who had a document the client needed and told her we were in a rush to receive it. That woman, whoever she was and wherever she might be today, changed my life forever when she said to me, very calmly: “Just because it’s your emergency does not make it my emergency.”

I have remembered that phrase and called on it many times over the years. I remember it when I’m running late myself – like the pinstriped gentleman above. It’s nor fair or productive for me to honk and rush the other drivers around me because I am running late. I also remind myself of this phrase when I see other people trying to make me hurry (or behave other than normal) because they are in a pickle. I tend to be a generous, compassionate person, so of course I’ll help someone who is in obvious distress or need. I’m talking about people who are just self-absorbed and unaware of how their actions are affecting those around them.

What does all of this have to do with positivity and health? Health comes out of positive behaviors. The pinstripe man had a choice about how he reacted to missing the train, just as the woman on the phone did when I tried to make her responsible for my client’s emergency. If we can plan ahead to have positive responses to stressful situations, we will save ourselves a lot of grief, unpleasantness, and potentially illness-causing reactions. Unmitigated, stress is a killer.

Beyond warding off stress, a positive outlook can offer:

  • Lower rates of depression
  • Greater resistance to illness
  • Better mental health
  • Improved cardiovascular health
  • Stronger coping skills
  • A longer life

If having a more positive view of the world could improve your health, wouldn’t it be worth it? The problem is that it’s not something you can just wave a wand to achieve, particularly if you are one of the nearly 50 percent of people who do not naturally tend to an optimistic outlook. One way to increase your positivity – and improve your health – would be to take part in the 30-Day Positivity Challenge. This is a 30-day series of exercises that gives participants a variety of assignments conducive to feeling better, overall. According to inspirational speaker Abraham Hicks, “Few realize that they can control the way they feel and positively affect the things that come into their life experience by deliberately directing their thoughts.” Abraham Hicks says we accomplish this by simply “reach[ing] for a better feeling thought.”

The choice is yours: Will you opt for positivity?


#fairypositive #blogboost

Gotta do the work to be healthy!

Laura Orsini is an author, speaker, consultant, publisher, and creator of Fairy Positive, an antidote to the worries of the world. Find her on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn.


11 thoughts on “When Missing the Train Ruins Your Whole Day

  1. That ‘…does not make it my emergency’ comment reminded me of a similar incident about a family member who is moody by nature and was in one of those moods on a day I was lunching with my best friends.

    One asked how she was and I stated the obvious and added, ‘I have no idea what I’ve done to her.’ My friend, who’s a counsellor, promptly said, ‘Whatever it is, it’s her problem. Why are you making it your own?’

    That was thought provoking and like you, it changed my attitude towards her and others who throw tantrums, in that I avoid getting sucked into their negative energy. Granted, it’s difficult when it’s someone I’m close to, but I distract myself by either saying mantras, or stick my headphones on and listen to music, or….

    Positive read. Thanks for sharing and Happy New Year:)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Cherry-Ann –

      Glad for you that your counselor friend was there to help you see the conversation differently. It helps when others can give us perspective we can’t get because we’re too close to some situations. Thank you for your comment – happy the post inspired you. Please come back!



  2. Lots of great ideas to unpack and implement. I wonder whatever happened to the pinstripe guy. I wonder what other stuff might have been going on for him or was he inherently grouchy and nasty?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Julie –

      Such a good question – I have no idea, but he sure made an impact on me. I had a friend once who said that when people react out of proportion to the situation, it’s always indicative of a bigger problem elsewhere in their lives. That may have been the case for this guy, or it may have been his go-to response. Funny how we never know who’s watching or what they’re taking away from their perhaps fleeting exchange with us. I have behaved badly myself at times – would hate to think someone is still scarred/affected by those incidents. Thank you for the food for thought!



  3. I definitely agree that positivity makes us healthier and can build resistance to illness. And what a wise thought about how one person’s emergency is not urgent to others. I wish she had been a little kinder with her response, though. Would have been good if she had said, “I hear that this is urgent for your client and you have taken it on as urgent for you. And I understand the pressure you must be feeling. But I cannot afford to take it on as urgent, myself.” Etc.


  4. Very true. Just because some people can’t get their act together, the rest of us does not need to be disrupted.
    However, if you’re a helpful, compassionate person by nature, it’s hard to tell them no.


    1. You’re right, Tamara. It can be difficult for an inherently helpful person to say no – but that’s part of our growth path toward positivity! Thanks for the read and comment.


  5. Great illustrations!
    I don’t wanna be that fist pounder! I’m more likely to stew than to pound, but both are unhealthy!

    Thanks for this!
    Pinning and sharing!!

    Ridge Haven Homestead


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