All of us who are frequent travelers were undoubtedly sharing similar thoughts while watching news accounts of the 2009 Hudson River crash US Airways Flight 1549. Some of my colleagues and I have discussed the following reactions. Do any of these ring a bell with you?
1) Did you experience flashbacks to the many “close calls” you have had during your travels?
2) Did you wonder how you would have reacted had you been on that flight? With “honor,” and a desire to help, or paralyzed with fear?
3) Perhaps you found yourself in renewed awe of the amazing training the flight crew received, and put to use?
4) Or, did you admonish yourself for all of your past griping and grumbling about delayed flights due to mechanical or other safety checks, the noisy hotel rooms and unsavory taxi cab drivers?
I don’t know about you, but I thought about all of these things, and more. The result? Many of us could be much more gracious travelers. I realized that I had become a “high maintenance” traveler and my resolution for 2009, and beyond, was to turn that around.
Several weeks before that crash, my wife, three children and I were coming home from a wonderful, virtually free, vacation in Hawaii … courtesy of hard-earned frequent-flyer miles and hotel points. Our red-eye from Honolulu to San Francisco was delayed two hours due to some sort of “equipment issue.” In no time at all, we chimed in with the rest of the passengers, who were sprawled all over the floor in the terminal, complaining about “ruined vacations” and “loss of sleep.”
How much more selfish could we be? We were safe, dry and actually quite comfortable. No amount of complaining would change the outcome. The flight and ground crews did their job and we eventually got on the flight and safely home. It doesn’t get much better than that, right?
With this in mind, I will be writing in future blogs about moving beyond the same old negative patterns that have plagued me, many of my colleagues and those of us who travel on a regular basis. You’ll see a liberal dose of humor, as I’ve found it to be a wonderful elixir. Your life will move in positive directions when you refuse let situations beyond your control define your day. Instead of opting to gripe and play the role of the “victim,” think of what you can do to turn things around. Whether plagued by lousy weather, delayed flights, the infamous middle seat, or other travel challenges, I will explore and discuss strategies for making the best out of inherently difficult situations. In fact, my theme for this positive thinking blog is:
Moving Beyond Stuck in the Middle Seat® Welcoming Change & Taking Control
My hope is that this blog will provide you a bit of comfort, even a laugh or two, during your travels. Perhaps it will help you take your mind off of what just happened to you…or what’s surely going to happen. Happy Trails!