Overreacting

Show of hands – how many of you out there have a smart phone – the kind without buttons? OK, how many of you that said yes thumb type?

Years ago, when the smart phones first started coming out, I was concerned that getting one without keys would slow my texting down dramatically. At that time, I had a flip phone and could text nearly as fast as I could type on a keyboard. I wanted an iPhone, but because I didn’t know how the texting would go, I got an iPod touch instead.

It was right after that that I fell upon some information. Someone told me (or I read somewhere) that the fastest way to type on an iPhone (or iPod touch) is with the thumbs. So I tried it out and in no time got the hang of it. I can now type as fast as I can on an ordinary keyboard. But there is a trick.

The trick to effectively typing on a device like an iPhone is to trust the device. You shouldn’t pay too much attention to what you’re doing mid-stroke. You see, the virtual keys are smaller than your thumbs, so you’ll touch the wrong ones all of the time. If you look mid-word, you’ll see mistakes. You’ll pause. You’ll correct yourself. And all of that slows you down.  However, if you type full speed and carefree, you’ll find that 90% of the time, the phone will get it right. If you have no proper nouns, you can get about 98%.

Thursday, while talking to a friend, my guides reminded me of this lesson, encouraging me to see the bigger picture.

In my previous post, I spoke of that dance when trying to get the temperature of water just right. We all do this, when washing dishes, when preparing the bath or shower. We even have to make adjustments as we go along.

Well, have you ever heard of the engineering term damp? Ironically, it has nothing to do with water. An example of a damping system is the shock absorbers on your car. Damped systems attempt to even out vibrations or variations – literally absorbing shock and smoothing out the ride. Remember those old commercials of the car whose shocks start to fail? The car hits a small bump and then bounces up and down indefinitely.

In order for damped systems to work properly, they have to operate within a sweet spot. Over-damped systems are too rigid, which is like having no shock absorbers at all. You feel every little bump. Under-damped systems are when shocks have gone bad; they turn a hard little bump into a bouncy on-going oscillation. Shock absorbers that work properly smooth out the ride without making you sea-sick.

Getting back to typing on the iPhone, when you watch what you’re typing mid-stroke, you are  overreacting (under-damping the process). The phone cannot correct normal mistypes effectively because you keep altering your flow.

In normal operation, each key you press, whether correct or not, provides more information. Eventually, the phone figures out what you meant. I’ve had times where I noticed a mistake, but kept going. As I typed, the phone kept guessing (incorrectly) what I meant, but by the time I finished the word and hit the space-bar, it arrived at the right word. Despite a number of wrong letters, it got it right in the end. And it didn’t get it right until then.

The Universe knows what we meant. It knows what kind of car, job, house, and lover we really want. It knows what we want to experience. However, when we overreact to life, we get in our own way.

When you adjust the hot or cold, you have to give it a second to see what the temperature becomes. If you just keep moving the knobs, you’ll never get there; it’ll simply oscillate between too hot and too cold!

Here’s another message that I got this week:

Every step of the journey prepares you to be where you end up. If you skip to the end, you’ll find yourself unable to handle, accept, and be where you are.

That’s when it shows up, and then goes away.

OH MY GOD! That is my problem!!! I am a chronic and extreme over-reactor. In fact, in some ways I’ve made it worse!

In the old days, I used to overreact to what happened – the past. I lived life and experienced what came. I then looked back and overreacted to the pleasure and the pain. If it was pleasure, I shot right to the desired end result. I fell in love over night. I wanted the long-term relationship before knowing the person for a short term.

As I matured, and had some experience under my belt, I started overreacting to what was happening in the now – the present. When I started to like the experience, I started to attach myself to it. When I started to not like the situation, I started to fear it. I was looking at what I was typing while I was typing and tried to correct everything that wasn’t perfect even before it became anything.

These days, I have advanced my perception so much so that pre-congnizance is common. It is fuzzy, but accessible. I can ask the same question one day to the next and get the same answer as to what’s ahead or what’s advised. I had thus begun overreacting to what’s coming – the future. Despite some prescience, I was still lacking self-awareness.

So I say to the Universe, “I want to be there,” and I then ask, “What’s your advice?” It then says to me, “If you wan to be there, you ought to go through here.” Sometimes I take a step or two, sometimes I feel just beyond the present. And more times than not, I say to myself, Ooh, it’s too cold over there or maybe, Ouch, that’s a bit hot. I then start reacting, adjusting, bracing, and altering even before getting anywhere. And I wondered why I came down with vertigo!

I confessed to you last time that I don’t like to get my hands dirty. Well, I also hate being too cold or t0o hot. I’m basically a big ole wimp – LOL.

Yet I now know that neither of those traits are the issue. I have finally arrived at what is – my core trust issue. I so trust my iPhone to smooth out all of my mistakes that I can type faster than I can talk. But I so distrust the universe (or my ability to create within it) that I can’t simply walk into the manifestations that I’m creating. [MS Word counts words as I type. In my first draft, that last sentenced ended at 999. Boy is that a powerful message!]

My advice to iPhone users is to trust your phone enough to type as fast as you can, but to also go back and edit your work. My advice to myself is to trust the Universe at least as much as I trust my phone. Live. Go down a path far enough to really see what it’s bringing (the type away part), then periodically sit and review how it’s going (the edit part). Reduce the overreacting – reduce the control. Reduce the anxiety. Give people and places and jobs and situations a chance to develop into something. If I chop down a three-year-old apple tree because it didn’t produce apples yet, I am doing my future a disservice.

There is always a better feeling place than where we are, but it is not always the end place we are seeking. Yes, we want to stay present and aware enough to be guided down the path step by step, but that is not the same as evaluating the end result with each step.

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