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Moving From “I have to” —>  “I get to!”

When I woke up this morning, I was so tense. I am juggling many balls and I’m not sure how I will get it all done. As I drove to my before-work walk with friends, I thought about which of the Centering Skills might be useful during this hectic week. I was already Noticing Myself and recognized that my clenched shoulders and tight tummy were telling me that I was on overload. What else might help? 

With so much on my plate, I remembered the Centering Skill of Positive Reframingand a corresponding thought practice one of my colleagues shared with me: I could change all of my “have to”s into “get to”s. It seemed worth a try. 

  • I “get to” grocery shop—unlike those who don’t have money or healthy food accessible or time away from small children or elderly parents.
  • I “get to” do my other errands—which are so much easier because I have a car and gas money and access to stores. 
  • I “get to” do laundry — unlike those who are unhoused or have no access to laundry facilities. 
  • I “get to” work—unlike those who are looking for a job, especially those with “different abilities” who too many employers don’t see as capable of contributing.
  • I “get to” do banking for my mother with Alzheimer’s  — unlike those who have lost their parents.
  • I “get to” plan some time off—unlike those who are working 2 or 3 jobs to put food on their table.

This Positive Reframing practice calmed me down. When I realized all I “get to” do, I felt so fortunate

I also felt so energized that when I got home I took on another reframing project! I had a dress that didn’t fit me well, and thought it might be better shorter. So I cut and hemmed it. Now I love how my new top reminds me how we can use Reframing to create new perspectives (or clothes!) for ourselves. My old  “have to do” list was not working, but my new “get to do” list fills me with gratitude and keeps me calmer. 

What do you “get to” do today?

With Resilience, 
Meri and the Dovetail Learning team

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