\ Same Bagel, Different Day | Christina Brandt

Recently, I reconnected with a friend from high school on Facebook.  We traded one or two brief messages.   He wrote “whenever I see a chocolate chip bagel, I think of you.”

Huh?  Chocolate chip bagels?  I have no memory of chocolate chip bagels playing a role in any of my high school memories, nor could I remember the last time I’d eaten one.  (I’m usually a Sesame or Everything girl.)

Joe’s comment got me thinking about how you can drop two people into the same situation and when you ask them to describe it afterward, you’ll get two different responses about what transpired.  Anyone who’s got siblings knows this; you can ask them all about what happened during Thanksgiving 1985 and there might be a few similar facts in each version, but often what you’ll hear is stories that vary wildly.

We’re all processing the events in our lives through very specific filters, sifting and tossing what doesn’t match up with our paradigm about how life should work.  Is this a good thing?

If some area of your life’s not working for you, look at the story you’re telling yourself about how something’s supposed to work, how someone’s supposed to act, or why your reality doesn’t match up with what you’re after.  Chances are it’s time to examine, and probably change, the filter (a.k.a., your beliefs or unspoken rules) through which you process your life.  To get started, ask yourself about the rules you’re following (or expect others to follow).  If you’re stuck, ask someone you trust and who’s familiar with your situation to tell you what they believe your “rules” are for how that situation ought to play out.  If you discover something that makes you feel anything except calm or happy, it’s time to shift.

As for me, I went out and bought a chocolate chip bagel, and it wasn’t half bad.  So, maybe I’ll modify my “only sesame or everything bagels for me” rule.  Thanks, Joe.

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