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Does it really matter? It is honestly one of my favorite questions.
As someone who struggles with perfectionism, anxiety and ‘doing it right’ this question keeps me grounded. It keeps me from getting too caught up in the race, the ‘keeping up with the Jones’ mentality and the belief that there is only one way. Yep, I admit I can be pretty intense. For those of us who struggle with ‘getting it perfect’ it is helpful to have a reminder that life will move along even when we mess up.
The other day I was driving and I noticed a woman speeding down the road, using the middle turn lane as a passing lane and I immediately got indignant, nope I got down right pissy. Yes she was being a dangerous and crazy driver but she was winning–she was getting there faster (I know crazy, right? but when these are the thoughts I have when I am really honest with myself).
I noticed my blood pressure rise and my anxiety shot up and I thought to myself:
Does it really matter?
Does it matter who gets there first?
Does it matter that she is doing something illegal and not getting caught?
In the scheme of things–does this matter?
Immediately I took a breath and relaxed.
Nope, it really doesn’t matter.
In the grand scheme of things, does it really matter if:
- your friend is 5 minutes late?
- you don’t find the perfect wording for the e-mail?
- you dinner doesn’t turn out as you envisioned it?
- you missed the light?
- your son didn’t load the dishwasher correctly?
Another common trait for the anxiety prone among us is we tend to misplace our feelings and emotions on to benign, meaningless items. Sometimes your anxiety just needs something to hold on to–rather than feeling the anger at your boss for belittling you in the meeting it is easier to put the anger on the driver who cut you off.
It is human, it is understandable. It isn’t always appropriate to express every feeling in the moment. BUT when you notice yourself getting angry, or fired up at something that is pretty small, ask yourself 2 questions:
The question Does it REALLY matter? Allows us to take a pause and figure out what is really going on. It also allows us to make room for what does really matter.
What are some areas in your life where you can ask the question–does it really matter?