P is for Pain. Or maybe Perfect, What’s Next. Or both. Yes, both.

I would guess that a fair few people will choose “pain” for their A to Z blog challenge p word. I’m using it because it’s one of those times when the phrase “Perfect, What’s Next.” is just the perfect thing to say.

As I write about acceptance this month, I have noticed that often the times I am being asked to be accepting of something is when I experience some sort of pain. The pain that comes from tons of different challenges opportunities.

If, at the point of pain, I accept the situation as being perfect, and simply move on toward what’s next, I free my creativity to kick into gear.

I can’t find an important paper? “Perfect, what’s next” allows me to expend little to no energy fussing about fact of the lostness of the paper, and instead focus on what I’m going to do about it.

I’m running late for an appointment? “Perfect, what’s next” keeps me in the present, remembering to drive safely, and figure out instead what to do about being late. Call someone? Relax? Cry? A and B, but not C?

Someone misunderstands me? “Perfect, what’s next?” allows me to accept the fact of being misunderstood and then think creatively about how to try again to communicate what I am saying.

It’s a simple, but pretty brilliant phrase that I find to be quite the powerful little pattern interrupt. My favorite iteration of it in the movies was Lloyd Dobler (John Cusack) in “Say Anything.” His philosophy: Acknowledge, and move on. (I looked for a clip on YouTube, but one was not readily apparent. To that, I say “Perfect, What’s Next?”) Well, you could just watch the film.

6 thoughts on “P is for Pain. Or maybe Perfect, What’s Next. Or both. Yes, both.

  1. The one about being misunderstood resonates with me. I have found, as you probably have, too, that sometimes acceptance of it is the goal. Period. (Some people won’t understand, no matter how creatively you work to get them there. That one has taken me a long time to accept.)

    And it’s funny you mention “Say Anything” (a great movie!). Just this week I was quoting that to my co-workers, none of whom have seen it. It was the scene at the Gas ‘n’ Sip, where Lloyd’s friends were giving him relationship advice. Makes me laugh every time I think about it!

    Thanks for the post. Makes me think.

    Perfect, no?

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  2. Now I’ll have to check out “Say Anything.” I am, or was, guilty of so many of these. Working to get past it since there’s not a lot of value in letting someone else mess up my life!
    Do you remember West Wing, early in the show? Staff had messed up, Bartlett listened to them, then said “What’s next?” when they tried to explain, again, he said something like. “That’s done. WHAT’S NEXT.”

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    1. Yes, I remember the “What’s next?” from The West Wing. That was one of my all-time favorite shows (even though I frequently disagreed with them). The dialogue was so much better in the beginning, when Aaron Sorkin was writing the episodes. (Yeah, I’m off topic, I know.)

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      1. Yes, that was a great show. I binge watched it for the first time during the nights of Kepler’s first eight months when I was using a breast pump 24/7! Kept me awake during those nighttime pumpings.

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  3. Haven’t seen the movie, but I can see this phrase kicking all kinds of frustration to the kerb in my near future. I love it! Acknowledge + move on = a very wise life strategy. Thank you for that! I’ll be back for more. 🙂

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