Friday, November 27, 2009

Maintaining a Positive Outlook in the Face of Constant Smackdowns

According to one of my best friends, Jo, life is all about having a positive mental attitude (abbreviated to PMA, opening her to much ribbing about a certain time of the month ... and yes, she does in fact yell it down the halls of school, via text message and e-mail, and communicates it in every way).

It's funny how sometimes, no matter how "P" your "MA" is, though, life just keeps smacking you down. You know those punching bag toy things, the ones that have sand at the bottom that keep coming back up no matter how many times you knock them over? Or, in the eternal words of Chumbawamba, "I get knocked down, but I get up again"? Why is it that some people are able to get back up so easily, while others just curl up in fetal position and whine about how the world is out to get them?

I'm curious, because my resilience to the ebbs and flows of life is kind of schizophrenic. Sometimes, I am totally on Jo's PMA bandwagon, singing Chumbawamba and popping right back up no matter how awful things get. Other times, I'm crying like a baby. Sometimes I surprise myself with my own strength, and at times I am ashamed of how weak I am. There's no rhyme or reason to it.

Is this just human nature? Are there people that are always able to take adversity in stride? If so, how does one become of that ilk?