Previously in Transitive Property Applied to Love & Divorce I talked about the incredible wisdom and insight that some of my friends have shared with me.
Well, one of said friends forwarded me this link A Powerful Three-Step Algorithm for Happiness, and I don't know how she knew it, but it was exactly what I needed. In Thank You to My Friends & Family, I talk about difficult it is for me to control my feelings. It all boils down to expectations, and the expectations I put on the people around me, whether it be strangers on the street, or friends and family.
In general, I've been able to figure this out with strangers on the street, especially while living here in Germany. There are loads of people out there, whom if I let, would drive me absolutely batty, like the waitress the other day at brunch who gave me the evil eye for ordering a Bloody Mary, the woman who shushed my kids and me, when I was trying to get them to look at the camera for a photo, or the German who had to correct absolutely everything German I said, which is fine and educational and all, but after awhile just became annoying.
Now I could let these people make me insane. I could go on for days ranting about how annoying and unfriendly they are, and I could let them jade my experience here, but I choose not to. (Instead I use them as characters in my writing). I look at them like a human being who has had a bad day, perhaps a bad life, or hasn't been blessed enough to learn how to be happy. Besides, I've always said, I don't need to borrow other people's drama, I have enough of my own.
I've been able to alter my expectations of the strangers in this world, but I need to give the people to whom I'm close the same consideration. People have lives to lead, we can't expect them to act according to our expectations. Like my ex's late Nanny, bless her soul, always said when we apologized for not visiting her enough, "I understand, life gets in the way."