An Unpleasant Encounter

Picture this: It’s 7:00 am. You wake up to the electric shrieking of your alarm and drag yourself to the kitchen. You are so sleepy that you can barely distinguish the almond milk from the only other thing left in the fridge: mayonnaise. Randomly grasping at a bottle, you hope it’s the almond milk. You shake an old cereal box over your empty bowl and realize you’re running low on time. You manage to hop into the shower, brush your teeth and hair, and walk through the mist of your favorite scent in less than 15 minutes.

By the time you dash down the stairs and catch your bus, you’re already sweating and tired. You really don’t want to miss your first morning meeting. The bus will get you to work exactly on time.

At the next stop, an unkempt, old man enters the bus and shuffles his way down the aisle. His silver hair leaves a greasy stain on the collar of his dingy, over-sized coat. He sits across the aisle from you. You swivel your head toward him and examine him with the critical eye you reserve for these moments.

A stench infests the air around you. The odor emanating from your traveling companion is so intense it makes you dizzy. You look at the clock. Forty minutes until you reach your destination.

I really can’t handle this! Why don’t people take a shower before taking public transportation? You know what? This is too much! I need to get out of here. You push up out of your seat, give the old man a contemptuous glance, and step off the bus into the middle of nowhere. You fish your phone out of your pocket, but the signal’s too weak to call Uber and there’s no taxi in sight. You are definitely going to be late for work.

You now have two options:

Option one:

You feel frustrated and angry. You are the victim of an odor conspiracy. You sit, dejected, on the curb waiting for the next bus to arrive and try to think of a plausible excuse to tell your furious boss who will be itching to fire you.

Option two:

You have an epiphany and become aware of your negative self-talk. You remind yourself that your world always takes the best care of you, and you decide not to give the event too much importance. Yes, I am probably going to be late. Not a big deal. Let me see what I can do in this moment to bring myself into a positive space.

You choose the second option. Light-hearted, you look around and decide to cross the street to a café. You sit at the bar and order your favorite caffeinated beverage. You start up a conversation with the person next to you. What you haven’t discovered yet is, that person is the soulmate you’ve searched for all your life.

Now, the only pathway to your soulmate was through encountering the foul-smelling man. Was, then, bumping into him a negative or a positive experience?

The funny thing is that whether you believe it is positive or negative, you are right! CIRCUMSTANCES ARE NEUTRAL. There is no such thing like a bad or a good experience. The way in which we choose to define each experience transforms it into a negative or a positive one. An event is just an event, and we label what we experience in keeping with our beliefs, our social and cultural environments, and our expectations.

What is most important is how we respond to the events in our lives and how we CHOOSE to interpret them. If we believe an experience is good or bad, our world will always agree and, like a loyal mirror, will reflect back more situations to confirm our belief.

Unfortunately, we’ve had a lifetime of training regarding how we should react to unexpected events. We’ve been taught to be sad or disappointed or angry. By doing so, we forget the essence of who we are as co-creators of each and every day.

But what if we choose to detach ourselves from judging what happens to us? What if we minimize the significance of the many events in our everyday lives? What if we decide that EVERY SINGLE CIRCUMSTANCE we come across in life is specifically designed to hold our hands and miraculously lead us to the most spectacular life path we can tread, to the most exciting playground, and to the greatest dream we can ever live?

I surely cannot answer these questions for you, but I trust – or choose to trust – that, by converting those questions into statements and core-beliefs, we enter into a magical state of knowingness enabling us to smoothly and gradually shift the reality in which we live. By making that decision over and over again each day, we will soon find ourselves playing with our world, dancing with it and blooming into a higher state of abundance and prosperity through an ecstatic explosion of synchronicities.

So, when you label an experience in your life as negative, catch yourself. Block your mechanical reaction to define an experience as negative, and respond in a completely unexpected way: train yourself to celebrate! Form the silly habit to rejoice and say “THANK GOD IT HAPPENED!”

While you make this transition, trust that, without you knowing how (and you don’t need to know how), each experience will lead you to the most magnificent adventure you will ever encounter.

Through that sparkle of awareness, you will turn your worldview upside down, and the world, as a fairy godmother, will gradually reshape itself and co-create more opportunities for you to rejoice in and celebrate.

Now, if you completely reject all this, don’t worry. Your world will soon provide you with plenty of evidence that you are absolutely right. But, if you choose to give it a try, be ready for the change. Act on it the next time you bump into another “smelly” situation. It might turn into one of your most profound blessings or even the beginning of a new and magical life.

By Marco Nunzio Alati
Reconnective Healing
Foundational Practitioner &  
Teaching Team Member
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