Just before reaching our building I noted the time and just what had happened. I noted how years ago I would have experienced unproductive anger and self-pity. My wife and I had turned an unpleasant situation into a very tolerable one. I had a sense of achievement that gave me cause to pause and do a little reflecting.
Although I have now practiced REBT for twenty-seven years it continues to give me a few wow moments when I do not bite on the bait fate tosses my way. This incident reminded me of how good it feels to respond to life well. I felt good about using REBT to make the best of an inconvenient situation. I felt like I had achieved something. I thought of how I could have whined and complained about cars, rental companies, IPhones, tow trucks, and life. I quickly thought about how I could have made myself angry and self-pitying. However, I resisted this temptation and I felt really good about not biting on the bait.
I encourage you to keep using REBT and Stoic philosophy with the confidence you too will have this type of experience. Remind yourself the next time fate or another fallible human tosses you a hassle or even a much more challenging adversity, not to bite on the bait. I think if you hold onto REBT’s Principle of Emotional Responsibility and choose to have healthy, productive negative emotions you will end up with a real sense of achievement. You will see that you can choose to be disappointed, annoyed, concerned, displeased or even productively angry in response to fate’s little test. If you successfully meet fate’s challenge you will observe that you have successfully implemented this powerful and liberating philosophy, see that it works, and that you can work it. You will probably think to yourself “Wow, I did it. I really did it this time. I can change.” You will also probably think that maybe there is hope for a fallible human like you who has lived a long life upsetting yourself by biting on the bait of fate, really does have the capacity to grow and change to a considerable extent. When REBT and Stoic philosophy clicks that first time, you will know it. Be on the lookout for the first time. After this powerful experience you will likely want to rise to the occasion again. You may look for opportunities to test yourself, to do rather than procrastinate and avoid, to assert your point of view calmly and respectfully rather than to respond passively, to risk disapproval and live shamelessly, and to take calculated risks to test your ability to use REBT and Stoic Philosophy to achieve your personal goals. Wow, imagine an enduring change in how you react to life’s challenges. I think you just might impress yourself if you keep at REBT and Stoic Philosophy!