Choosing Good Vibes

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It was a bad day turned good day by intentionally choosing good vibes over bad when things were headed downhill. Expecting good things are going to happen is so freaking powerful! I use this power of positivity time and again in life, but sometimes I catch myself getting in the habit of whining and complaining too often and then I’m amazed all over again at what happens when I strongly shift my attitude. In today’s blog post I’ll share just a little example of how that worked for me on Friday. 

Let’s start this story with a little background to set the stage. Curt and I had been in Seattle all week visiting family. The week hadn’t gone exactly as planned - we had to cancel our drive to Helena to visit with my daughter Justyne and all week I was feeling torn between work that needed to be done right away and just enjoying time with family. We had also planned to take a couple of day hikes while we were here and with our time in the northwest quickly drawing to a close, we had yet to do that.

So Friday was the chosen day for a hike in the mountains. The weather forecast was perfect and we figured the trail wouldn’t be crazy busy since it was technically still a “work day” - albeit the day leading up to a holiday weekend. I was so looking forward to getting outdoors for more than a quick walk. After just one quick call I needed to take first thing in the morning, we’d be on our way right after morning rush hour - or so I thought…. A few hours later I was finally wrapping up the call and the work that resulted from it, so we didn’t hit the road until about 11:00 am - first annoyance… The planned hike was at Mount Baker, a three and half hour drive with normal heavy traffic. It probably was not a great idea to stick with the plan at this point, but I was so looking forward to getting out and into the mountains, that we decided to go there regardless. I realized we’d only have a few hours to hike once we arrived, but reasoned that a few hours was better than nothing and we wouldn’t get the chance to go here again any time in the near future. So off we went.

 

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Up-shifting to Good Vibes

We quickly hit downtown traffic and sadly it strung on and on for miles - second annoyance… As we crawled along we realized that it would be 4:00 before we even made it to our destination. The plan just didn’t make sense any more. I was so so bummed. The alternative destination was a ferry ride over to Whidbey Island and a walk at Eby’s Landing. Can’t say I was stoked with the change of plans. We’d been there before and while it is a lovely area, it simply wasn’t what I’d been eagerly anticipating. My ego automatically went into pout mode. And I might have let it stay there had I not thought about the book I’d been reading the night before - Becoming Supernatural by Joe Dispenza. It was talking about how the brain builds neural pathways and so I decided not to reinforce one of my negative paths. Instead, I intentionally decided to believe that there was a reason the morning had transpired the way it had and that this was going to be an incredibly good day.  

Within a few minutes of shifting from pout to optimism, I suggested to Curt that we try again for the mountain hike tomorrow. While I’d thought that he probably only wanted to hike one day at this point, he said that was a great idea and his response quickly lifted my spirits a little more. As we headed toward the ferry terminal, I tried to find another hiking spot so we could check out someplace new. Unfortunately everything that seemed interesting to me was too far to go at this time of day. I could have easily used this as an excuse to reinforce a negative neural path, but I caught myself yet again and silently emphasized, “This is going to be a great day!”. We arrived at the ferry terminal and the line was incredibly long. It was going to be an hour wait in the car just to get on the ferry, not to mention the 15 minute ride over there. My ego piped up, “This is ridiculous. Why bother at this point. You may as well just cut your losses, head back to the house and hope tomorrow is a better day.” I was tempted to give in. Things obviously were continuing to not work out in our favor.

 

But I silently repeated my positive intention for a great day yet again and we continued on. And you know what? From there on out, it was indeed a delightful day. Though we’d been to Eby’s Landing, we actually hadn’t done the coastal hike and though this is a popular one, it ended up being late enough in the day that there were relatively few people along the trail. It was easy to see why this hike along the bluff was a favorite for so many people. The views were outstanding and the constant breeze was welcome on a warm sunny afternoon.  The second half of the loop brings you down to the shoreline. Tying up my hiking boots to the back of Curt’s backpack, I stuck my toes into the sand and smiled. Barefoot on the beach - can’t complain about that.

This is one of those beaches with smooth round multicolored pebbles. It’s a wonder my pockets weren't loaded up with stones with unique stripes of quartz or different hues by the time we got back to the jeep, but knowing my suitcase was already a bit on the heavy side I restrained myself. At one point Curt handed me a bright, white rock shaped a bit like a heart and said, “I give you my heart.” Another smile crept onto my face and came back several times the remainder of the day each time I felt it in my pocket. 

 

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Good Vibe Persistence Wins Out

The last challenge of the day was finding a place to eat dinner.  With so many restaurants no longer in business and restricted seating rules, my first thought was that I’d better prepare myself to settle for something decent. I have to admit that I’m a bit picky when it comes to what I want to eat - not because there are few things I like to eat, but rather because I really enjoy eating really good food; dishes with a wonderful blending of spices, fresh and unique flavors, etc. And since we don’t eat out much these days, I’m really choosy when we do. So once again I had to intentionally push my negative ego out of the way and intend that there was a hidden gem out there that we hadn’t noticed before. We ended up in a small family owned Italian restaurant. As we drove up, my ego shouted “Oh well. From the looks of this place on the outside, I know you’re going to be disappointed.” It was time to shift back to positivity - I took the perspective that sometimes the little “hole in the wall places” have the absolute best food. And low and behold it was fantastic! The place didn’t have great curb appeal, but inside were white tablecloths, real candles and a friendly staff. The wine choices were great, the pasta delicious and it ended up being a perfect close to a lovely afternoon and evening. If you ever find yourself in Anacortes, I highly recommend dinner at Ciao Bella.  

While this had been just an ordinary day, there is no doubt it would have been a real downer if I’d succumbed to listening to my ego all day. I’ll be honest that it did take effort to keep shifting my perspective to a more positive light, but it was so worth it while enjoying the delightful afternoon that unfolded much the opposite to what I had planned. It was nothing like what I’d looked forward to, but who knows, perhaps it was even better.

 

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