Don’t Make Mountains Out of Molehills

{ Don’t Be Such A Drama Queen }

Don't Make Mountains Out of Molehills

Photo Credit: Kampol Source // Flickr

Exaggeration. Exaggeration. Exaggeration. A vexing habit that is completely ubiquitous within us millennials (especially this guilty little Modern Alice). It is an instigator to creating a calamity from nothing. An agitator. An overreaction to the mundaneAnd an unnecessary action initiated that overwhelmingly creates a domino effect of negative consequences. It’s an unfortunate trait that hinders us from achieving our goals and becoming the best person we can be.

Exaggeration is an instigator to creating a calamity from nothing. Click To Tweet
How many times have we made a big deal about something so trivial and allowing it to ruin our day? 

Getting upset over something so small and insignificant? Letting agitation fester when someone cuts you off or, Lord forbid, having the slowest possible driver in front of you as you’re late to work? Maybe the waiter forgot to refill your water after asking for the second time during restaurant week? Even when your boyfriend decides to be a sloth from time to time? And my personal favorite, when someone does not respond back to your text message instantly. It’s the little things, the little distractions, the little inconveniences and how we handle them that determine our character. Don’t let the small difficulties transform into a colossal predicament. Don’t make mountains out of molehills. It only paves way for negativity to chase us through the day.

Everyone is subject to problems; they are inevitable. However, misery is optional. Do not let your emotions overcome you during these slight drawbacks. We need to be more cautious and aware of the gravity of the situation.

Everyone is subject to problems; they are inevitable. However, misery is optional. Click To Tweet

Is what we are facing a meager aggravation or a legitimate adversity? As the famed Paster Joel Osteen explained in one of his inspirational sermons, he proposed that the best solution to avoiding making mountains out of molehills is to categorize your problems. He organizes it into three types: the five minute problem, the five hour problem, and the five-year problem. 

Let’s look at the different examples of problems:

  • Is your significant other’s lack of ambition to text you back right away and post on Facebook or Instagram instead really worth damaging your relationship over? No, that’s just a five minute problem. It can be rectified instantly. The situation does not call for World War III. We’ve all been guilty of enacting this. Let it go.
  • Is your tardiness to catching a flight to the airport for a business meeting worth the road rage? No, that’s what we could classify as a five hour problem and nothing a deep breath and extracting yourself from the irritable emotion can’t fix. Take a moment to understand that our lack of planning is not someone else’s problem. Do not endanger lives because we woke up late. Consider the consequences of your irrational thoughts before you act upon them. Sometimes things happen for a reason. Maybe you were meant to be late to avoid an accident or to meet the right person. Five hour problems are fixable, not permanently damaging.
  • Last but not least, is an unexpected discovery of a suit filed against you that will potentially result into a financial setback be a reason to be depressed? No. Although this is a serious matter, it’s not a time to panic and get flustered. Sure this would be what we would classify as a five-year problem and is not easily amended, but problems exist to find solutions and improve our character. This is an example of where you can appropriately gather your resources and expend a larger amount of time, effort, knowledge, and energy to remedy the situation.
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In the midst of these so-called disasters we have labeled, we have to ask ourselves, “Was the counterattack or defensive mechanism that we employed worth it? Did we gain something positive or lose something important because of what we decided to do or say in response to the situation?”

What we need to understand is, it’s easy to get caught up in the little things. Waste our energy and precious time on nuances that will not matter a day from now, two weeks from now, or three years down the road. Some things we let under our skin are not life changing circumstances. We need to conserve our energy for bigger crises.

If we squander our energy over small troubles now, we won’t have enough to exploit when we really need it dealing with the real issues later. We need to pick and choose our battles.

Be both intelligent and smart about our choices. We need to ingrain the concept of the five minute, five hour, and five-year problem categorization when a challenging complication arises.

Adopting this mentality will present us with clarity. We will be able to consciously ask ourselves what type of problem are we really facing? Is it truly worth making a fuss over? We will be able to look at the situation from a logical standpoint. Weigh the options and understand whether or not what’s happening right now will really matter in the grand scheme of things. Too often we overreact on situations that can be overlooked or forgiven, however, when we enact this thought process, we are able to avoid that descent. We are able to exercise avoiding acting on impulse and regretting our actions later. Again, don’t make mountains out of molehills!

Like the story in the Bible of David and Goliath, if David wasted his energy on his brothers’ bantering and derogatory insults about his physical lack of strength and status before his fight with Goliath, he could have been easily too distracted and lost. It would be a good argument to say that if he entertained the tension that built and engaged in a squabble with his brothers because of their slandering, he would not have been as focused and determined when fighting Goliath. Like David, we need to identify whether our problems is a Goliath or not.

Walk away from something that isn’t a five-year problem.

Don’t get discombobulated from an earlier encounter of a small issue when that energy could have been sustained for the real obstacle ahead. 

Be vigilant, be conscious, but be sensible. There is a time and place for being assertive.

Remember, “Whoever is slow to anger is better than the mighty, and he who rules his spirit than he who takes a city.” Proverbs 16:32

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