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Most of us would not readily admit this.
But let’s face it, we live for drama.
Ever been caught in a long line of traffic only to realize that it was being caused by a relatively minor fender bender on the other side of the road?
Ever strained to eavesdrop on a fight between a couple as you stand in line for coffee?
Ever found yourself gossiping about a boss or coworker?
Consider all the ways we make mountains out of molehills. When you think about it, it’s quite a peculiar behavior.
We, unlike other animals, create or are attracted to stressful and chaotic situations.
It’s hard to believe, but we do it mostly for entertainment and distraction. It’s a good way to break the sometimes mind-numbing monotony of our lives.
We participate in drama in order to escape boredom.
Don’t believe me? Consider a recent study which demonstrated that people would rather shock themselves than sit alone with their thoughts.
Our constant need for stimulation has its costs. Like drinking too much coffee, our craving for drama can leave us feeling anxious and stressed.
And stress can have a significant negative effect on your health, having been linked to high blood pressure, heart disease, and obesity.
If you’re constantly tired, stressed, and irritable, it may be time to consider how drama may be playing a role. If you’re interested in living a drama-free life, consider these steps:
1. Understand that you are the source of all the drama in your life
I know it may seem like other people bring drama into your life, but if you want to become a drama free person, then consider the truth of the above statement.
In order to be free of the drama in your life, you must be willing to own it. All of it.
Because only you can choose whether or not to engage with another person’s drama.
2. Mind the company you keep
That said, creating an environment that facilitates drama does not help. That’s why it’s so important to mind the company you keep.
If you associate with co-workers who constantly gossip about the boss or fellow employees, you’ll quickly find yourself doing the same.
Consider limiting or eliminating associations with people who gossip, complain, and blame. Consider seeking out people who are thoughtful and positive.
3. Look for the positive
Speaking of positive, don’t just seek out positive people. Look for the positive in every situation, even when you’re in the presence of negative circumstances or people.
No matter how negative the situation is, you can choose the narrative or story you tell yourself about that situation.
Remember, drama loves negativity. So monitor every thought for even the tiniest signs of negativity and nip it in the bud.
4. Replace with drama with reverence
Because drama is the primary way we stave off monotony and boredom, it’s not enough to eliminate the drama. We need to replace it with something that produces a similar effect.
And that worthy replacement? Reverence.
It’s not a word we see much in our culture anymore, but it’s an important one. When we practice deep respect for ourselves and others, we will begin to experience wonder and awe in our lives.
When a person is inspired by the awe of it all, it’s virtually impossible to be bored. Instead of gossiping about others, you will reverence the divine in them. Instead of distracting yourself with the most sensational news stories of the day, you’ll find pleasure in just noticing your breath.
The best drama of all
Because the real drama is just realizing that we are here.
And that life-giving forces, which you did not create or have any control over, created and sustains you each and every day.
Fully inhabit this life-sustaining drama and you’ll never need to create drama ever again.