A black cat sitting on a chair outside, looking at the camera
Coping Skills

Friday the 13th

Today, my alarms didn’t wake me up, so I was asleep until late morning, unlike my typical routine where I wake up decently early and am ready for the day. It seems appropriate that this would happen on Friday the 13th. So what gives? Is there truth to this somehow? Maybe in some small way, there is.

Shortly after I woke up, I came across a meme on Facebook. It said “I’m not superstitious. But I am a little stitious.” It’s a joke, but I’ve noticed that we all seem to have a bit of superstition that is a bit deeper than just words.

We mock superstition, but do we not knock on wood, or try to flip Murphy’s Law against itself?

“Everything is going so very well”

“Oh no, don’t say that! It’ll fall apart if you do.”

paraphrased common dialogue

We want to use Murphy’s Law backwards. We say things will go so poorly so that we’ll have to eat our words when they go well. We make the sacrifice of words so that we can get our intended result. If you don’t believe me, try not doing it. Try walking under ladders and having black cats get in your way, or opening umbrellas indoors, and if you have money to waste, break a mirror. (Probably don’t do the last one on purpose, but you get the idea). It would be hard to not partially expect something bad to happen afterwards.

Of course, something bad will happen afterwards. Every day is filled with many things, some good, and some bad. No day is perfect, and so when we do something “unlucky” we will certainly have a “bad thing” afterward to prove it.

So what do we do with this? I recommend extra use of affirmations and reality checks. The first reality check I use myself is to realize that I really do have a bit of superstition in my bones. Cerebrally, I know it’s nonsense, but my heart believes it just a little bit. That’s embarrassing to say, but I think it’s true of most of us, and acknowledging the truth helps dramatically. “Admitting you have a problem is the first step” they all say, and I rather agree. I’ve talked before on the stages of change, and the first “step” you take between those stages is to stop denying you have a problem.

So I know I have a tad bit of superstition in me. What now? Fight it with truth! I choose good over bad. I choose progress. I choose an active thought pattern that pushes good will and truth on me. I don’t think I’ll ever get all the superstition out of my head. I think there’s just something so human about superstition. But by taking powerful action against fear, I can expect the best overall.

Constant little steps like these can change a life. Choosing to fight against superstition on one day isn’t going to change my whole life on its own. But if you add that to my efforts to work more, to my time with friends, my introspection, and other skills, it all adds up, and my life continues to improve. Today is another opportunity to grow!

Image by Michelle Maria from Pixabay

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