Leave Your Baggage at the Door


By Julie Oshins, “Play It Forward”

Life is 10% What Happens to You, and 90% How You Respond to It” Charles R. Swindoll

Life happens. Your car breaks down, you get an unexpected $$$ expense, there’s crazy traffic, a loved one gets sick or passes on, the babysitter cancels, you break up or get divorced etc. And sometimes “life” happens at really inopportune moments. Like on the way to an event, or the day before, or you get bad news right before a client meeting. All of those things can affect your emotions and your ability to perform.

Many of you know I lost my 19 year-old nephew last year 2 days before a big wedding (” The Show Must Go On”). In April, I ended an 11-year relationship the day before a wedding. And just last week, I got news of a friend passing on my way to meet potential clients. They booked, but only because I know how to check my baggage at the door. How do we put our best face forward, despite dealing with challenging life circumstances?

One of my DJ peers Craig, articulated it so clearly, “I chose this life and even though it calls on me to be the “life of the party” when I’m not exactly feeling it, it also allows me to sleep in most days. I don’t have to report to a stuffy office everyday (quite the contrary, my office is sometimes the beach or another beautiful and freeing location) and I have the PRIVILEGE of entertaining people for a living, which is what I’ve always wanted to do. So, when I think about those things and put it all into perspective, it’s pretty easy to conjure up a perma-smile and be the life of the party for a few hours. And, if, for some reason, I’m working with someone whom I don’t particularly like, the knowledge that I don’t have to work with them again if I don’t want to, is a comfort as well. In short, I quickly tally up the positives and negatives of my chosen profession and the positives end up winning every time.”

Here are a few ways to save the day, and leave that baggage at the door!

  1. Get Physical! Take a walk, do jumping jacks, dance, BREATHE . . . do something to get in your body and get blood flowing. It has been proven that by moving in an upright position we improve our self-esteem, mood and decrease our stress level. Then add a smile as you walk to also reduce depression and boost resilience.
  2. Put on “that song”. You know the one that you can’t help but jam to. Do your thing; sing at the top of your lungs. Listen to it back to back in your car on the way . . . I promise you, it will shift your mood. We know how powerful music is!
  3. Have a friend/power partner/designated buddy who you can call to vent to each other, give words of wisdom and advice, and be a sounding board so you can clear your mind of your concerns and troubles. This should be someone who makes you feel appreciated, loved and safe. Sometimes all we need is to be heard to clear our head and our energy.
  4. If you already know about this circumstance . . .you have to prepare in advance as much as possible.

At the end of the day, people are depending on you to make their event the way they envisioned it, and the way you promised to deliver it. So choose to be bigger than your circumstances.

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