Jun
25
2013

  A/C Attitude Adjustment!

We have a houseguest this week, so the whole family is off our routine. Today this meant I had to take the Jeep instead of our sedan. The A/C in the Jeep doesn't work, and it's 90F out there today.

Driving around running errands, I was pretty unhappy about this turn of events. With the windows down and nothing but hot air blowing on me, I thought miserably, "this must be what the air feels like inside a clothes dryer." But I also recalled somewhere in the back of my mind that once I owned another car with no A/C. I had to think waaaay way back, but then I remembered I had a Honda Civic hatchback, my first car. It might have had A/C at some point, but it quit sometime during the time I owned it, I think I had that car for at least five years. I didn't recall being miserable in the heat back then, so I tried to discern what has changed that I was so miserable today. It dawned on me that now I have a sense of entitlement that I didn't have back then. I was appalled with myself; people complaining about problems that aren't real problems as much as they are just the result of a sense of entitlement is one of my pet peeves! So I snapped my fingers and reframed my mind.

That feeling of driving around with he windows down on a hot summer's day was what it felt like to be nineteen and in charge of my own destiny with my entire life waiting to be discovered on the road in front of me. With this in mind, I turned up the radio, relaxed, and enjoyed the feeling of the wind blowing through my hair, content with my world and the realization that I have another 20 years ahead of me full of adventures and unknowns, just like I did back then, the last time I was driving around in a $4000 car without A/C.

An attitude adjustment is infinitely quicker and more practical than changing your circumstances, but the increase in happiness can be the same. More, in fact, in the long run, since you can get happy right away when you change your attitude and so enjoy more time in a state of happiness than if you had to wait for your circumstances to change before you could be happy.