The Missing Tile Syndrome
Think of a beautiful resort with all the amazing amneties and beauty all around. Especially the swimming pool with it’s oh -so -gorgeous location and beautiful murals in the surrounding walls. Suddenly, you notice that there’s a tile missing right at the centre of that otherwise perfectly beautiful wall. Now, all your attention is grabbed by that missing tile and you now find it difficult to appreciate the beauty all around.
That’s human nature. We tend to focus more on the negative or missing things in our lives than what we already have. Originally termed by Dennis Prager , the Missing Tile Syndrome refers to the psychological tendency of humans to focus on what went wrong, what is missing and what needs to be corrected instead of what is right. Focussing on negative things significantly hinders our work, happiness and well being.
I remember that a couple of years ago, the “missing tile” in my life was having a baby. I was so desperate to try everything to become a mother that it robbed me of my happiness. The frustration had started buidling and my married life was also getting affected. It was during that time that I had read about this and started applying it in my own life.
Here’s what I did
I accepted and acknowledged that there was indeed something missing in my life. That I probably needed a baby to bring joy and happiness in my life.
At the same time I also accepted the fact that having a baby is not under my control. There are some things which happen at their in time, when they are destined to happen. What was under my control was to remain stress free by not worrying about it. Stress, among many other things is one of the major reasons for failure in conception. So, I made sure I threw it out of the window.
2) Take a step back
I took a step back and remembered all those times when I was unable to see those two pink lines on the test strips. I also remembered those times when I had failed at other things in life.. getting the highest marks in college or a surgery not going the way it should have been. I had come out as a better person after my failures and had learnt a lot from them. So I told myself, this too, shall pass and I will survive this.
3) It’s not the end of the world.
I kept my mind open to all the other possibilities of becoming a parent rather than just focussing on the failures I was facing. Telling myself, that one way or the other ,we will become parents someday , took away a lot of unnecessary stress from our lives and gave a lot of hope for the future.
The “Missing Tile” steals away our happiness and focus in life. The stress that it brings with it affects our physical and mental well being. It’s all in our hands if we continue to focus on what we don’t have in our lives and remain sad or focus on the blessings we have and choose to remain happy.
So, stop focussing on that extra weight you have, or that small pay cheque you are getting, or those inches of height you wished you had. Ask yourself and analyse if it’s in your control or not. If it is, work towards changing it. If it is not, move on and change your focus towards happier things in life.