Right as Rain: Gotta Take the Wins with the Losses

2020 is almost over.

I have spoken very loudly that this is a great year for me, despite being a dumpster fire on a warpath through our world.

I’ve made some big strides in my business, bought a new vehicle and moved to a new house, my family is happy and healthy, and I’ve saved more money than ever before.

I even posted on Facebook the other day that “I’m the happiest I’ve ever been and a lot of it is down to the support I get. “

This is true.

But this year I just couldn’t get out unharmed.

This morning I phoned several plumbing and septic tank companies to see who was available to find out what I don’t think is a major plumbing problem in my rental property, but all the signs point to it.

I already have a video camera inspection scheduled for tomorrow.

This weekend my short term tenants texted me about slow drainage and water leaking from the toilet floor. They had to leave after I tried to open the sewer for four hours and moved in with some friends.

The next day, a plumber couldn’t get past something blocking the sewer. Next, we’ll go in with a camera to diagnose the problem. It’s an old house so it could be a broken pipe or roots growing into the plumbing system.

Anyway, it looks like it’s going to cost me a lot.

Even if I type this, I think about how it would have put me in an anxiety-ridden stress storm that would have ruined my vacation and probably my whole year if this had happened at any other time in my life.

Not so long ago, something like this would have crippled me both financially and emotionally.

But I’m not in this room right now.

The house has been the most profitable for me this year, largely due to the consistent housing of travel nurses who work at UNC and Duke. While I don’t want to lose all of the tenants’ profit or income, I have the money to cover it (at least I hope).

Instead of freaking out, I sit here and quietly wait for the results that will affect my next decision and action.

And while my financial situation has improved and it’s easier to take the blow, I’m more proud of my emotional ability to withstand the potential tailspin.

I only learned that recently.

What helps me is to realize three things:

  1. I am not so naive as to believe that people are not in situations where it would cripple them financially and / or emotionally. Especially this year. The fact that I only lose some money, but not my health, not my family, and not my mental stability, makes me grateful. And coming from a place of gratitude calms me down.
  2. I have become more aware of my actions instead of just reacting irrationally. I step back and look at things from a macro perspective and try to figure out how to use a situation to my advantage. For example, if I have to rip open my sewer under my bathroom, I lean in and use this as an opportunity to make a final makeover to the entire bathroom. When I was so consumed with fear, I could never see that bigger point of view – only what was right in front of me.
  3. As someone whose self-worth is measured by productivity and achievement, the flip side of that coin means that my self-shame is due to failure, neglect, or non-fulfillment. Simply put, I am a guilty party. And I usually blame myself. But as I’ve gotten older I’ve accepted that shit happens sometimes (in this case, literally) and it’s nobody’s fault. We just have to do what we have to do to deal with it.

Life is a roller coaster ride and we have to accept the ups and downs as well as the gains and losses on this journey.

But as long as we make conscious choices and take strategic action to grow and move forward, get better, and get better in the long run, that counts.

This past week was one of the worst moments for me. But in a year full of growth, alignment and happiness I know that I can take this “L” and develop myself further.

And this year has challenged us all in different roles.

But hopefully it’s just been a bad year.

Rain Bennett is a two-time Emmy-nominated filmmaker, writer, and competitive storyteller with over a decade of experience producing documentaries focusing on health and wellness. His mission is simple: to make the world happier and healthier by telling stories of change.

You can read the rest of Right as Rain here and check for a new column in Chapelboro every Wednesday!

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