My husband likes to ask me this question, “What are you doing today?”
- Harmless question, right?
His exact words are: “What are you doing today?”
But what I hear is: “What are you doing with your one and only life?”
- A daunting question about what I’m doing to make my life count!
I try to respond with a calm tone, and I start listing off the day’s agenda: “First I have School Drop-off, then I have to go to the Grocery Store. I have to Connect with Clients, and I have to Clean the Toilets, Fold Underwear, Make Dinner… “
I got so frustrated with his daily question that I borrowed a line from the movie, Napoleon Dynamite.
Whenever Todd fired at me with, “What are you doing today?”
I fired back playfully with, “Whatever I want, GOSH!”
But one day my husband gave me a gift that changed the tone of both his question and my answer. It’s really more of an attitude shift than it is an actual gift, but it has changed my perspective on the way I approach life – the way I approach my daily routine.
Todd challenged me to stop saying, “I have to…” and to start saying, “I get to…”
I don’t HAVE to take the kids to school, I GET to take the kids to school.
(My time with them is limited and precious. What if I changed my attitude and made the most of it?)
I don’t HAVE to buy groceries, I GET to buy groceries.
(We have money to buy groceries, to choose healthy options and to splurge on fun treats like chocolate chip cookie ice cream sandwiches. I GET to do this!)
I don’t HAVE to clean the toilets, I GET TO! (Picture me with the toilet wand raised high in victory!)
Can anyone relate? Or am I the only one?
It’s not just chores we HAVE to do; that one word has invaded everything we do!
“I HAVE to get to the airport by 6:00am!”
“Wow! That’s early, where are you going?”
Really? You HAVE to go to the airport? You HAVE to travel? To Hawaii? (Picture me rolling my eyes.)
What if today we change our mindset and choose to see that WE GET TO DO THIS!
It’s such a small shift, one word. I don’t HAVE to, I GET to.
It has been one of the best gifts I’ve ever received. And it gives me courage to face each day, no matter how exciting or tedious my to-do list, to face each day with greater purpose and meaning. It actually adds value to the least meaningful thing I do all day – I GET to fold underwear, and I GET to fluff the couch cushions, and I GET to return emails because I GET to live this one and only life!
Whatever you are doing today is a gift.
WE GET TO DO THIS!
***If you would like to learn more about how to live your life with greater meaning and purpose, please send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and visit www.patersoncenter.com for a free online Thinking Wavelength tool.