Thursday, August 8, 2013

A Lesson I've Learned: Don't Sweat the Small Stuff

I have recently come to a realization: women (and more specifically, mothers) have a huge amount of anxiety. Some more than others... but I have had so many discussions recently with women from all different walks of life and they all seems to have some stress and anxiety throughout much of their daily lives.

Which left me to wonder, with all of the trials and tribulations I have to deal with, why am I not more anxious all the time? One friend so kindly pointed out I must be bottling it all up and I will just blow one day. But I don't really feel any underlying stress. How do I account for this? How are my coping mechanisms different from other women I encounter?

After many discussions and weeks of pondering, I saw this post from Lil Blue Boo. Ashley has dealt with severe anxiety and panic attacks; struggled with ADHD and social anxiety, eating disorders and alcohol abuse... and most recently cancer! If any Momma has a reason to be anxious, it's her.

But her mindset in coping with the daily minutia of life is very similar to mine: don't sweat the small stuff, but absolutely appreciate the small stuff.

She even created a list of Small Stuff versus Big Stuff. Although I do not have a written list, it is a mental list that I constantly refer to.

Just yesterday, I ran out of gas miles from home because my gas gauge is broken (great excuse for me). All I could do was laugh at myself and call a friend. The girls and I hung out in the sunshine on the side of the road... uploaded a couple of pictures to instagram and, thanks to great friends, were on our way within minutes, no worse for the wear.

When small things happen like that throughout the day, I simply stop and think of a couple things that I have to be grateful for. In this situation, Acadia was napping, so we did not have a cranky baby girl on our hands. This car that ran out of gas is in great condition and a very reliable to drive. I have AAA so, even if I did not have a great friend so close, we still would have been ok. The list of things to be grateful for in that situation were endless.

I have an amazing man in my life who lost both his son and wife in the last couple of years to suicide. And whenever he is having a bad day, he has a mantra he says that, no matter what his day holds, he has already experienced the worst days of his life. So there is just no use in wasting your energy in stressing over the small stuff.

That is my lesson. Do not waste your time, energy, resources or moments worrying about things you can not change or, quite simply, just don't matter. Are your kids fighting about what to wear? Well let them wear what they want. Are you running late for an appointment? Well reschedule and use that extra time to catch up on another area of life you are behind on. Did you forget to take out something for dinner? Give the kids a peanut butter sandwich and some carrot sticks and call it good.

Just think that all those moments that you are spending with stress and anxiety are moments lost with your love ones. And moments are something we can never get back. Unfortunately, our moments on this Earth are limited, so make the most of them before they are gone.

Learn some other lessons today with Mama Kat.
Mama’s Losin’ It


  1. I had a panic attack once and the pernicious thing about it is you end up a deep fear of experiencing that panic again and being in any situation remotely similar stirs up an anxiety that's felt rather then thought about. I just try to not let my mind run off on "what if's". I can't say positive thinking or thankfulness helps.

  2. Wow such a great lesson. I'm constantly humbled by the experiences people have weathered. I'm glad people like Ashley and your guy have channeled the negative in an inspirational way rather than succumb to the sadness.

  3. It's so hard. I worry all the time. I do try to see the bright side of things, but it's hard at times.