Adult Mental Wellness

Murphy’s Law

Yesterday my husband and I had the privilege of attending a memorial service to pay honour to our friend, Wayne, who lost a 20 week battle in ICU against a Superbug that ultimately claimed his life. Yet because of the way he lived and because of the impact he’d had on those around him, Wayne was a victor. In addition to being a faithful husband, loving father, and proud grandfather, Wayne was a man with a mindset that enabled him to experience a great deal of joy during his lifetime.

You see, Wayne didn’t hang out with Murphy. You know Murphy…. the guy that wraps and loops and entangles himself in your psyche, convincing you that whatever can go wrong, will. For example, if you’re running late, you know you’ll encounter every red light along the way. And of course there are no parking spaces, because there are never any. And just you watch: every weekend there will be good weather, until it’s holiday time. “Figures!” Murphy’s Law.

With a Murphy mindset, there is a running tally of every unfortunate thing that has ever been encountered, while most occasions of “luck” or “good fortune” seem to not make it into the mental archive. What a dark cloud it is that follows overhead with this kind of thinking! Dark, oppressive, discouraging, and embittering.

Back to our friend, Wayne… A few years back, he had just bought a new boat, and so, with his former boat to sell, he immediately spotted a fellow at the marina who appeared to be interested in finding a new boat. Within minutes, the man bought Wayne’s old boat. As Wayne was recounting the story to me, I expressed astonishment at the incredible luck that Wayne had in finding someone almost instantly who would buy his boat. In response to my surprise, Wayne looked me square in the eye and stated, “It happens to me all the time! I’m constantly lucky!” And he meant it.

With this said, I know my head tipped, and my face got that “I don’t get it!” puzzled-but-intrigued kind of look. “Are you kidding?” I thought. I had never run across anyone in my life who had that to say about themselves. Oh, I’d heard plenty of rumblings from all over the place about how rotten a person’s luck always was, complete with a rolling of the eyes that complains, “Here we go again!” But a person’s speaking of how good their luck constantly was? Never had I heard this before!

Personally, I don’t really think that Wayne necessarily had a whole lot more good fortune in his life than anyone else. What he did have, however, was an awareness of it, every time it occurred. He kept a roster close at hand of all the good things that fell into place for him. And as a result, he drew more good fortune to himself. After all, when you have a positive, optimistic, friendly outlook on life, are you not more attractive in general? Wayne went looking for good things. He looked past the bad, and focused in on the good.

As I now reflect back on the years I’d known Wayne, I realize that I had never seen him being nasty, ornery, or unkind. On the contrary, he seemed always to be looking for ways to lend a helping hand. Wayne was a content and happy man, and he brought contentment and happiness into the lives of others. It was infectious.

Thoughts that are focused on the negative and on misfortune are contagious; likewise, thoughts fixed on the positive and on good fortune are contagious. As a person chooses to see things, so shall they be. Herein lies a deep and precious truth that has the power to bring joy into even the darkest of places.

Mindset matters. Once again.

Peace to you.

Share this post