April 14, 2019, Palm Sunday, and 5 inches of new, wet, drenching SNOW!!! Surprise! It is not really spring yet here in the Midwest!

Isn’t that the way life can be also? Things are just going along, one day at a time, nothing too earth shattering and then boom……..a surprise awaits you! In an instant, life presents a new challenge that must be dealt with, wrestled with, and a solution found!

Options are always available for the choosing. One can ignore the issue, meet it head on, or dance around it for awhile. For sure, it is probably not going to disappear on its own, without some amount of work on our part. I have found that ignoring the issue never really works for me, and sometimes it just makes it worse in the end. I will admit though that sometimes I dance around an issue, going back and forth, until I walk up to it, grab it and solve it.

A new book by Tania Luna and Leeann Renninger, Surprise: Embrace the Unpredictable and Engineer the Unexpected, suggest that “surprise, whether good or bad, is important for bringing vitality to our lives. Surprise works on the dopamine system in our brains, helping us to focus our attention and inspiring us to look at our situation in new ways.”

The authors talk about the four stages of the surprise response: freeze (stopped in our tracks), find (trying to understand what is going on), shift (perspective adjusting), and share (with others).  In essence, Luna and Renninger support the idea that surprise can foster “curiosity, wonder, connection, vulnerability, growth and creativity” through embracing and engineering the surprise, negative or positive. I like this idea!

How’s your life…….any surprises?



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