Like most mornings, I woke up early today to get a head start on my writing tasks before the household got busy. Sitting down with my mac and my cup of coffee I realized that I had to tackle the status report reviews first thing. This is a new process I've put in place with my staff and I wanted to uphold my end of the bargain.
As I was combing through my emails looking for the status report, I came across a weekly newsletter from an organization to which we belong. I opened the newsletter and discovered that they had advertised our competitor (not an Oklahoma business) right there in the newsletter.
My face flushed, and I was livid.
I knew that they were going to use the competing product due to a long story. Let's leave it at they were wrong and unfair in the deal, but I chose to drop it. Seeing this headline in the newsletter, I felt incredible discomfort.
I tried to move on to other work. "They've made a terrible mistake, and one day they will see the mistake they've made," I said to myself.
Then I stopped myself. I wanted revenge. I wanted to make myself feel better, make the bad feeling in my stomach go away by plotting a revenge scenario in which they would see they were wrong.
My logical side immediately said that this was a useless and unproductive waste of time. I should just get over it. After all, what would happen then? When or if they saw they were wrong, what then? What is the great gain?
Until that time I have all of this discomfort in my stomach because I know that I could win the battle if I wanted to, but I CHOSE to drop it for the sake of bigger battles I'm fighting.
As I was thinking about all of this, one of the items on my task list popped up because I have been researching the health benefits of rebounding (bouncing up and down on a rebounder). I let my browser lead me to the articles for distraction.
I scanned through the lists in the articles until my attention centered on a single thought.
How funny, rebounding is bouncing back or recovering after taking a blow. My pride and my business plan had taken quite a blow in the situation I mentioned. Clearly I hadn't rebounded. I was bottling up the anger and irritation. I was not only angry at them. I was angry that I didn't have time to win the fight. I was angry that I was forced to make a choice to let it go. But I hadn't let it go at all. I just shoved it to the back. I know this is true because every time I thought of it my insides got twisted up.
A benefit of rebounding is that it rids your body of toxins. I think anything that keeps oxygen flowing through healthy cells is toxic to our bodies. When I am upset, I don't breathe deeply and easily. I notice that I hold my breath or my breathing becomes shallow.
In my 49 years, I've had plenty of time to ponder the value of forgiveness. At a conceptual level I've understood that holding grudges and seeking revenge can be very damaging to your relationships and your health. But here was a specific point in time where I could say that feeling this way kept me from breathing easily.
My health is more important to my family than seeking revenge. My relationships and goals deserve my attention. As I begin to breath deep cleansing breaths, until all of the tightness and irritation is gone, my perspective is clear.
Rebounding is an active exercise. It might take a while to clear some of the toxins so you have to keep exercising. Emotional rebounding exercises your ability to forgive. It removes waste products and brings life (oxygen) to every cell in your body.
I'll likely have an opportunity to think about this situation (or others) in the future. Just for grins, I'll probably picture myself bouncing up and down on a rebounder. Would you like to bounce along?