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It Is What It Is

This is one of my daughter’s least favorite “momisms” on the planet (I can practically SEE the hair stand up on the back of her neck when I say it!) and one of my favorites.

It is my catch all phrase for when something can’t be changed. It just is what it is.

And when something can’t be changed, you don’t have a lot of choices. You have to either except it and move on, or spend the rest of forever banging your head against a brick wall.

Now I’m not opposed to the idea of banging your head against a brick wall for awhile. It tests the theory of whether or not it is what it is, or if it just seems like it is what it is, when in reality,  it CAN be changed if you just apply serious pressure. Plus, when you’re banging your head against a brick wall, it feels SO good when you stop!

It all sorta falls into the basket of figuring out whether something is within your ability to control. There are some things you CAN control. What goes into your mouth is a biggie, and really, one of the few things you have TOTAL control over. Your attitude – that’s another huge one.

There are some you have limited control over – how you spend your time (or at least your “free” time) what you think about, and other things that don’t need to take into consideration their impact on others.

But most things in life, you have little to no control over, particularly if you’re married and/or have children – other people’s behavior, where you live…it’s a really long list once you start thinking about it.

Even if you own your own business and are not subject to what your boss wants you to do, you can’t control everything. You can work hard AND smart, but you have little control over whether or not anyone wants to buy what you want to sell. You can ADAPT what you’re selling to what they want to buy, but you can’t make them adapt to you.

Now I admit, underneath it all, I’m a bit of a control freak. I like things done the way I want them done. If everyone did what I want them to do, the way I want them to do it, the world would be a better place, maybe even perfect. But I don’t live in anywhere near a perfect world, and very few people have the same opinion of the wisdom of my ways as I do. So I’ve had to adjust.

That’s where “it is what it is” comes into play. I control what I can control. I exert mild pressure onto the things I have some degree of control over. And I learn to just accept the things I have no ability to control. Said much more eloquently than I ever could…

It’s an oldie, but it pretty much says it all, even if you take the “God” part out.

So, are there walls you’re banging your head against? And how good would it feel to stop?

About tatterednworn

I am a woman who has committed to living a creative life.

4 responses »

  1. Love it… great post.

  2. Great message, so very true. I like how you have levels of what you can control, instead of all or nothing. I have always loved this quote, it is an classic, but truth usually is. However, just for the sake of fun, from one control freak to another, Janet, I have a slightly modified version of it.

    Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
    The courage to change the things I cannot accept,
    And the wisdom to hide the bodies of those people
    I had to kill today because they pissed me off.

    And, help me to be careful
    Of the toes I step on today as they
    May be connected to the ass
    That I might have to kiss tomorrow.

    It’s good to know your own weaknesses and ask for help when you need it… 🙂


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