086: How To Turn Chaos To Calm [Podcast] – Todd Stocker.com

You don’t have to look far to find that chaos is running rampant in our society and world. If you let it get to you, it will hinder your success and ruin your outlook on life. Today, I talk about one powerful key making sure you can stay calm in the midst of chaos.


ON THIS EPISODE:

“I’m so busy I don’t know whether I found a rope or lost my horse.” – Mark Schaefer

If you watch the news or stream social media, you can easily be overwhelmed by all of the chaos that floats through our society.  If you flip through the talk shows or read the news feed, Politics and conspiracies, opinions and non-factual information threaten to wreak havoc and steal the joy in which God wants you to live.  

Happiness is based on short, external bursts of happy feelings.  When you get that job promotion- it makes you happy. When you get an A on a test.  The sugar rush of a chocolate frosted donut.  It makes you happy.  But happiness is fleeting.  What you want is Joy. 

If you find joy, you find happiness.  If you find happiness, you may or may not find joy.  And the problem with society is that we spend more time looking for happiness, rather than that foundation, confident, fulfilling experience of joy.  And it doesn’t take long to have happiness sucked right out of us because the chaos of life happens.   

And you see the negativity around you – there’s plenty of it.  

The key to turning Chaos to Calm is simply this.  You chose to do it.  

I’m going to give you three choices but the overall key is to understand that you have a choice.  Feeling chaotic is still just a feeling.  And if you’ve been listening to the podcast, I’ve said this many time because it’s true.  You have the power to chose what meaning you put on your emotions.  You have the power to chose how to respond to those feelings.  Yes, feelings are strong and consistent but once you make up your mind what those feeling mean, it makes all the difference in the world.  

So here are three choices you can make to turn Chaos into Calm

  1. Choose your attitude – In our brains, we all can hear a parent or teacher right now.  ‘Attitude’ a settled way of thinking or feeling.  When I feel like all of the chaos in my world and the global world is just too much, a simple choice of saying, “It’s going to be okay” is settling your way of thinking or feeling. 
  2. Choose your focus – Bondurant speedway. “Target fixation”. Often, when the chaotic feelings happen, you need to intentionally hit pause and focus on the most important thing going on.  If your finances are in chaos, make a budget.  Dave Ramsey, Financial Peace University.  If you have 18 action items that should be accomplished in the day, slow down, organize them using my Productivity 101 cheat sheet.   Ask, at the end of the day, which one has the greatest consequence if I don’t get it done.  Regarding world events, it’s important to know what’s happening in France right now for example.  But don’t focus on it.  Don’t obsess about it.  Focus on that which you can control.
  3. Choose your response – I mentioned this earlier and it is intentionally third on the list.  Once you settle your mind and slow down to focus on that which matters, then you can choose how you are going to respond.  If you see a 10% drop in revenue from the previous quarter, don’t jump off the ledge, find out why and then chose to respond or not.  Same with world events.  If there is something you could do in local governments or in your community, get involved if it’s a wise thing for you right now.  

RESOURCES:

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Be QUIET!

There is a Starbucks coffee shop on the boardwalk in Kemah, TX.  If you’ve been there, you can picture it resting in the shadow of the mighty roller coaster.  When there, I loved being the first one to grab my early morning Joe and take a slow – very slow – walk around the pier and pathways that encompassed the amusement rides.  Sometimes, I’d meet my friend Sam Brown but mostly I would notice the rides.  That early, they were quiet.  No roar of the steel tracked kiddie cars.  No hum of the carousel.  No churning of the “Vominator” as I call it.  Simply the few workers who were testing, cleaning and inspecting every hinge that would keep the riders safe.

Solitude is not a luxury but a necessity.  God set up the cosmos for the ebb and flow of activity and quiet.  Yet, we fight against the value of being still.  We wield the sword of our schedules against the rejuvenating, calming and refreshing time of inspecting and fine-tuning our lives.

Why is that?

This morning, as is my custom, I woke up before my household, keuriged my coffee and spent time in prayer, calm and thought.  I am ready for the riders of my day.  I am set for the bustle of the crowds of my schedule.  And all it takes is a few extra moments in the quiet of His presence.

Peace,

My new website:

Do You Live on an Island or Bridge?

I’ve met many people during my years of ministry.  Wonderfully flawed, beautifully imperfect souls whose journeys have been dotted with ups and downs, victories and losses.

One observation that has proven to be true more times than not is shaped by the question, “Do they live on an Island or a Bridge?”  Here’s how this goes.

The Island is what one would define as a ‘normal’ life.  Daily schedules, common frustrations and everyday tasks all contribute to their steady rhythms of life.  Stress levels ebb and flow just like everyone elses.  Those who live mostly on islands are what you’d call normal.

The Bridge is defined as the more-than-normal struggles in their life.  A failed class, job, business or relationship.  A tragic loss, a major health issue, a sudden drama.  The Bridge is a place of transition.

Island dwellers are uncomfortable with being on the bridge but see it as a connection to another island; an island where they can set up home again and settle into normalcy.

Bridge dwellers are uncomfortable with Islands. When life seems to be going well, i.e. they are on an Island, they become fidgety.  As a result, they consciously (or unconsciously) create drama so they can live on the uncertain, swaying of the bridge.  Their ‘normalcy’ is chaos and think that something is wrong unless they or someone around them is have a hemorrhage!  Oxymoronic!

Examine your life’s attitude.  Are you an Island dweller or a Bridge dweller?  Can you identify people who live mainly on the Islands or Bridges?

Peace!