A Life Principle My Daddy Taught Me

My father was probably the most bottom line guy I know. One of his most quotable lines was “The main thing is don’t get excited.” If anyone was ever tempted to stress about an issue he would interject this often repeated line.

And, there have been many times I have needed to remember those words.

There’s another phrase he used often, however, which may be even more poignant for our day. Perhaps you need this one – for whatever you are facing – or fear you may face.

It is what it is.

And, you know, it really is what it is.

In other words, you can’t change it now. That’s a fact, Jack.

There is a Bible verse which always comes to mind. This may be one of my favorites.

If clouds are full of water, they pour rain on the earth. Whether a tree falls to the south or to the north, in the place where it falls, there it will lie. (Ecclesiastes 11:3)

It is what it is.

When the clouds are full – it rains.

When the tree falls – there it is.

Admitting “it is what it is” allows you to quit complaining and actually begin to figure out how you will live with the reality you are facing.

You didn’t get the job promotion. It is what it is.
The business failed. It is what it is. 

Where do you need to admit it is what it is?

Perhaps your marriage is in trouble. Maybe you have a spending problem. You’ve let your weight get out of control. Perhaps you’ve been a lousy friend. It could be you are in over your head and don’t know what to do about it.

Insert yours here __________________. But, whatever it is…

It is what it is.

The first step in moving forward is often to admit the reality you’ve been denying or trying to ignore. Now that you’ve admitted what it is you can ask more important questions, such as – What are you going to do about it?

Because where you’re going is far more important than where you’ve been or even where you are currently.

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Ron Edmondson

Author Ron Edmondson

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Join the discussion 8 Comments

  • Hunter Burney says:

    Great stuff Ron. I'm going to use this to frame my introduction in a leadership class I am teaching on influencing behavior change.

  • Something which I can do in such a situation:

    — Immediately set the tone of “calmness" and reflect upon the same
    — Just keep gathering the facts by setting aside the condemnation
    — Seeking Godly counsel to explore options
    — Executing (whatever is possible)

  • Eric says:

    I live by this same principle. I work at a church and a college and I teach my students this principle. It doesn't do anything to dwell on something that you can't change. It's better to expend your energy on something you can change.
    Twitter: ericspeir

  • @MickyDiaz73 says:

    It would be very easy for me to view my life from that vantage point. I could not even remember the number of times I have even said those words. I'm obviously confronted with certain limitations that could use God's "enabling grace". To answer your question brother Ron, my first and foremost act has to simply surrender the issues that I am confronted with by "Letting Go…Letting God", pray things through, and ask for the support of my family and friends through prayer and encouragement along the way. Last, but not least, I ask you to support me through prayer and encouragement as well. The blog post is simply amazing and eye-opening as well. God bless you and yours and thanks for sharing!

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