I came downstairs to make my Bulletproof Coffee (only decaf these days), my new morning ritual, and Mike looked up at me in his adorable scruffiness as he said, “Want to hear the super exciting news now or later?”
“Now!” I replied enthusiastically.
“All 21 days of the Money Love Challenge emails went out this morning!”
Oy vey. Really? There’d been an unsaved sequence glitch in our system that triggered the whole freaking thing all at once on the first day.
We sent over 8,000 people 21 emails each, all within a few-minute period. Not exactly how we were intending the challenge to start out.
Side note: As I write this, “Shake It Out” by Florence and the Machine came on. (I always thought it was “Shake It Off” until this very moment. I prefer that title and will continue to sing it that way when I’m dancing alone in my living room. I like the symbolism better.)
“And it’s hard to dance with the devil on your back,” she sings. Ain’t it the truth.
So how do we get that devil off our backs?
Here’s the deal: pretty much every day for the rest of our lives things are going to happen which we wish would not have. Especially if we’re out there doing things that stretch us or someone else.
We have a choice: freak out or flow.
An initial freak-out is normal. Perhaps even necessary.
But how long your freak-out lasts is really a personal choice.
Pretty quickly after my “Oh shit” moment, when I started spinning out about our looking like complete internet marketing neophytes, I realized something:
True emergencies are rare.Separating true emergencies from mere hiccups is freedom. (Tweet it!)
This was not an emergency.
Mike shot a quick video apologizing for the error. I wrote a quick email doing the same. We cleaned it up to the best of our ability and moved on with our day.
Freak Out Or Flow
Next time something happens that you aren’t super psyched about, check in with yourself and ask:
- Is this an emergency or a hiccup? (Hint: 9 times out of 10 it’s a hiccup. When you identify it as such your entire physiology will shift. Your stress hormones will decrease. Your breathing will deepen. The rest-and-restore system will be triggered. And you’ll be much better equipped, emotionally and mentally, to make a smart decision about what to do next.)
- What can I do to fix, or at least improve, the situation? (Hint: 9 times out of 10 a sincere, “Pardon me,” combined with a brief explanation of how you’re working to fix the problem will do the job quite nicely.)
- Do that thing as soon as possible with a lot of love and as little frantic energy as possible.
When you identify a problem as a hiccup rather than an emergency, you deal with it like the sane, gracious human being you are. That’s a gift to everyone.
I got quite a few messages from sweet friends reminding me that all is well, that tech mess-ups are part of being adorably human, and that the crazy numbers of emails were simply a manifestation of rampant abundance. I love the people I’m blessed to get to love.
As I wrote out my apology email I remembered this:Mistakes are part of the business of creation. If you’re not making them, you’re not making much. (Tweet it!)
Next time there’s a problem and you note that it’s a hiccup, not an emergency, congratulate yourself. Likely you’re out there making shit happen. And no matter what happens, that’s a good thing.
Over to you:
How do you most effectively turn your freak-outs into flow? Have you ever felt like something was an emergency but then realized it was just a hiccup? How did the switch in how you perceived it help you or not? Leave a comment below. I’d love to hear from you!