Today’s mindfulness activity is about a situation which occurred, and divining what is in our control and what is not. I’m going to go through that process now with the help of the Handbook. It begins by answering a few questions.
1. What’s the situation?
A semi-annual qualification was sort of sprung on us at work early, with less than a week to alter the schedule to accommodate all the workers’ participation and duty schedules. A supervisor at work denied my schedule change, I then had to do on which my job hinged after a 12-hr shift, having had a turn-around shift the night before (only 8 hours between shifts, 45 min commute each way). When it came time for the qual, I only did the bare minimum to pass. I had only had 5 hours of sleep in the previous 40 due to the duty schedule. I was angry at myself for doing poorly, I was angry at my supervisor for “screwing me.” The supervisor could have switched my coworker’s schedule with any of the other 18 employees, but it was easiest for him to deny my schedule change, which I had organized myself, and give it to the coworker who did not have one yet.
2. How much control do you have over the situation as a whole (0-100%)?
3. Why isn’t it 100%? What aspects don’t you have direct control over?
Over whether the change was accepted I had no control. I could have quit as a result, but that would have been unreasonable.
4. Why isn’t it 0%? What aspects do you have direct control over?
I had very little control over the situation. I exercised almost all of my control by trying to get a schedule change, filling out the proper paperwork, and submitting it a week in advance.
5. What would happen if you made a conscious effort to adopt a more Stoic attitude towards this situation by completely accepting things beyond your control, and taking full responsibility for things under your control?
I would have likely been less angry, I might have been able to focus better on my quals since I wouldn’t have had these thoughts on mind, and thereby done better. I would likely have been happier at work the previous and following day, since I wouldn’t have been nursing hurt feelings.