"It Is What It Is..." or Is It? - Mr Benja's ADD Experience #39

Why do people hate the phrase "It Is What It Is"? Why do people love it? Recently, I've had a revelation about what it says to creators.

2022-05-19 It Is What It Is

[00:00:00] I am three minutes late to starting this thoughtful Thursday, but that's okay because it is what it is. And that is my topic. My selection for today for this episode of Mr. Benja's, ADD experience, live thoughtful Thursday. I do these, as I've said before to kind of round out the week to start slowing my mind down a bit and get into another phase of thinking.

And I ramp up beginning of the next week. So it's a cycle, right? And for this one, I wanted to go. Somewhere a little interesting. It's a place that I don't quite yet understand. It's still a part of my journey. It's still a part of my, my growth. I'll get into all of it, [00:01:00] but it's the statement and the meaning behind it is what it is.

And not my meaning. It's just whatever your meaning is. However you see it. That'll be fine. But it's kind of profoundly changed my life just in the way I've reframed it. So

it'll help also,

I started on this? I think because I was looking at, and I still am looking at and understanding branding and something has branded itself as. To the point where we say it is what it is. We'll get to that in a second. Once again, though, I just wanted to thank everybody for joining in.

Please remember to actually subscribe to the podcast on Amazon, apple podcasts, Spotify, your favorite player beam, pod, sprout bean sprout, what's it called? Buzzsprout or whatever. But. [00:02:00] Being being Podbean. That's the name of it or any of the others,

but that's up to you for now. Relax a second. And let's start thinking about some things.

It is what it is.

I'm not sure where exactly the statement came from. The statement itself has traveled quite a bit, but it's a curious one because people use it in different ways and it's interpreted by people in different ways. So just like many other phrases. I suppose, but this one got me because it was several years ago.

I was hanging out with a friend, Jeff Cuneo and hello, Catherine. And I was [00:03:00] hanging out with my friend, Jeff and he, we were in a bit of a stressful situation and he separated from.

In a way that kind of shook me at the time we were in this stressful situation. And I turned to him for agreement support you know just making sure we're on the same page confirmation. And instead of playing along with whatever negative energy I had going on. It is what it is and kind of shrugged it off.

Now. I was so in the moment, at that time, I can't even remember what the exact context of the situation was, what was the context and what he said and exactly what he even meant by it. I was just so, like, that's not what I wanted to hear. I got very pissed off. but that statement, that time stuck with me. Years later [00:04:00] I come across a book or two or three, and they've got this idea of accepting and letting things be.

And this isn't the concept I've liked for a long time. Like, we'll just let things happen. Just let things be when it was told to me, I always heard it as just be average. And there was a lot of that going on. Be simple, just be regular, just be pushed around.

Hey you know, we don't have any, we don't have much money for gas to get to the, to get to the movies. Well, it is what it is. That's the kind of stuff I'd hear. What do you mean is what it is, do something about it. And I would get very frustrated

or maybe it was raining. Well, it's raining. We can't go outside. It is what it is. And then it's like, people would just accept the sad [00:05:00] situation. Are you going to change the rain? Not really.

The term as I was hearing it, I'm not even sure how people were using it. The terms I was hearing, it was very negative and it doesn't have to be that way. And this is what I'm recently coming across. And in fact, I, I asked a few friends what they thought and some of them told me Devin said, it's supposed to be a term of acceptance.

Another way of saying I accept it for what it is as I can. Okay. Uh, Johnny says, it means you can't change whatever it is you're talking about.

Okay. You can't change it. Paul says you're perpetuating the status quo makes sense. And Landon said, it's Landon says it's an excuse to rate relent to current circumstances and it's a cop out. All of these, I suppose. Are there, they're all true in what they're saying? So, no, one's wrong here, but I there's this concept of just letting [00:06:00] something be accepting something, not tolerating, not coping, but strengthening yourself by saying I'm having a problem processing that I'm having a problem with reality, or I'm upset. I'm frustrated. I'm sad. I'm whatever, because there is something out there doing whatever it is. Something is just out there. And I don't like it. I am upset by it. I'm something this way of thinking it is what it is, is powerful in a positive way, where you go from trying to change the outside world to affecting the outside world, to trying to.

Adjust things external from you in order to attempt to change your reality when [00:07:00] it's much more beneficial to change, what's inside you. And I say beneficial, it's the only real possibility.

And yes, that is an ice cream truck in the background. I somehow scheduled these calm moments during the time when the ice cream man decided to come by. But you know what I think about that ice cream music, it is what it is not something to get bothered by something to recontextualize. So it is what it is.

You know, you can look to the Buddhist who said something along the lines of life is suffering because of expectation. Whenever we think something should be one way and it's not that way. And we get upset by something in the outside world, something that doesn't is not close to us, then we've got a problem.

So therefore we suffer [00:08:00] because. We have expectations about life and we want them to be one way and we suffer because it's impossible for reality to actually be the way we sense it. And that's kind of the stripped down mangled version of what the Buddhist would say, or some Buddhists would say, if you are a Buddhist listening to this and I've gotten it all wrong, please let me know.

So if it's impossible to change things, I mean, if things are what they are and you say it's impossible to change them, people are going to think, wait, what are you talking about? I thought you always talked about changing the world and making things different, making things better, making, creating things, creating things is changing the world, right?

What are we talking? I'm not going against that. I'm restructuring where the [00:09:00] change occurs. The change occurs within me. If the change occurs within me, then my reality in my head changes. If my reality of my head changes, I'm going somewhere with this, chill out. The reality in my head changes. Then I respond to the world differently.

The world I've just created in my head the way I see things, my framing, oh boy, here we go. So, and I'll go back to this example from NPR, NPR did a story on a group of hotel clerks. The hotel clerks all worked in this low pay hotel that was grueling work. They had to walk up and down the hallway. You know, sometimes up and down staircases cleaning, you know, lifting things standing up, squatting down, standing up, squatting down, you know, continually washing, wiping [00:10:00] a lot of physical labor.

And it's very monotonous and tedious and frankly gross, but that's not important here. In their training. They were told that

this is exercise. You're getting a good physical workout. You're having this many steps. This walking this much a day gives you this much calorie burn. You know, wear nice shoes and, you know, it'll, it'll be good for your, your feet, your exercise, you know, the standing up squatting down good for your legs.

If you do it correctly, and they would teach them how to do it correctly. The other group on the other hand were just, Hey, this is your job. You get paid this much. Go about and do it. So that group, obviously, as you can tell from where this is going. Their health deteriorated. The, the ones who, you know, were just, Hey, it's just a job or whatever they would walk around.

You know, they're probably eating, eating potato chips on the job, or I'm going to get a drink afterwards. They didn't [00:11:00] think of their job as exercise. The other group who had been conditioned to think of what they were doing as, as beneficial to their physical bodies, they increased much, much more. In the health department in health area,

they were more fit. They fought about fitness, more. They were able to make better decisions about being fit. . They stopped eating so much junk food and they stopped. They started taking care of themselves more because of the way this job trained them. So part of the job became

part of the job became this thing where they improve themselves. As opposed to just getting a paycheck or whatever. Now, this major shift in their mindsets change their reality. So

that's what I mean when I say changing your reality and the way you think about things. If you can do that change internally, because if you look at the situation with the nurses, [00:12:00] nothing changed on the outside, nothing changed externally. It was still the same job. They walked the same steps. They scrubbed the same floors vacuum, the same way that didn't change.

It was only on the inside that changed. So when I now process the phrase, it is what it is. I personally look at it as

understanding that the water that we sailed in is going to do with the water does. The weather is going to do what the weather does. I trust people to do what those people do. I don't get upset by it. I work to improve myself and not sit out there thinking if they were different, I would be better. [00:13:00] That's conditional.

I don't want this conditional thing of, if that thing. Was some other way than I would be better. It's the other way around. I would be better. I am better. I get better. I do better. And by, by the process of, you know energy transferal or me just being more equipped, stronger, however you want to phrase it more educated, more.

If I say, I get better, I am better. I do better. Or I work on this cell from the inside out, suddenly everything out there just becomes whatever it is,

this switch in mindset. And the way of using that phrase has changed my life. In a very good way. And only recently, have I [00:14:00] really been able to understand that, like not to say that things shouldn't affect you or things don't affect me, or you're not sad about anything or mad about anything. That's not what I'm saying, but riling yourself up.

Being in a fervor being upset about something that's not inside you, it's out there. How has that really bothered you? Especially things that aren't that close. You hear something on the news? No. Oh, this other virus broke out. I hate the world. Oh, this person said this. I can't stand life. [00:15:00] Oh, I can't believe the prices are going up on.

Not saying it's not true. Not saying it doesn't exist,

but I have two questions. Why is it bothering?

And what do you plan on doing about it?

If you're not going to do anything about it, you can just stop right there. It's like, well, that's that, I'm not going to do anything about it. At that point, you can just leave that alone. I think this is where Jeff was coming from, but I'm not sure. Like you can try to fight back, you know You know, you could try to fight back you know, an avalanche with, you know, a snow shovel, you can try, but that avalanche is what it is.

I mean, if you that's, that's where I think Jeff was coming from, where there are better things to think about, better things to spend our energy on aside from things that we can't really change. In fact, this goes back to my serenity prayer talk, [00:16:00] classic God, grant me. The serenity, serenity, the peacefulness, right?

God grant me the serenity to accept the things. I cannot change courage to change the things I can. Oh my God. It's coming back. Courage is what's inside you changing what's inside you. That's the real test. I suppose it takes courage to go outside and, you know fight off a velociraptor. You got to work from the inside, decide to go outside, right?

Courage to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference. So I suppose this all comes back full circle to that. It is what it is as a distillation of the serenity to accept the things I cannot change.

This is a [00:17:00] dangerous one because people can be very defeatist when they say that why can't change? I can't change that at all. I can't fix anything all world's going away. Oh, it can be very defeatist when people say it, it is what it is. Can sound very dismissive. Like, if someone's doing something they really shouldn't be doing, but you don't want to get involved and you just want to dismiss it.

Oh, it is what it is, man. That guy's going to, they're going to do whatever. That's very dismissive. I'm not about dismissing about engaging.

And what else would there be? That's a problem with it is what it is.

It perpetuates nonsense a lot of times.

And yeah, a lot of times it's a cop out. You just give up, you quit and you say it is what it is a lot of times. But after talking through this, which I'm glad why do these things? It's about the serenity, to accept the things I [00:18:00] cannot change. I think that's a good definition or distillation of what it is, what it is can mean for you and what a lot of the spiritual types really mean by that.

In fact if you have a better phrase for it is what it is. I would like to hear it you can leave a comment here and I'll continue thinking about this because it is what it is a phrase I used to despise, and now I embrace, but in a different way, like I thought it was one way, but then I thought about it differently. And it's the other way. Huh? So. If you enjoy this, please be sure to share with somebody, let somebody else know.

I don't do a particularly, I don't spend a lot of time trying to advertise this to a lot of people. I just do it to the, I just put it out for the people that already know me. [00:19:00] But I do think there's a lot of good happening here or at least I hope so. And if it's garbage, I need you to tell me that, to tell me where I'm I can improve or what I should do more.

So that's it for this one. Thank you very much for joining along. Katherina you go by Kathleen or just Catherine? Katherine Minera. Katherina a quell article. I'm not sure. Very glad you joined us. Thank you very much for following along. That's going to be it for this one. With Mr. Benja's ADD experience, you can also get on my social media. I'm not social media. My email newsletter at Mr. benja.com/email every week or so I put out a. A little written thing. If you're into the email, I'm pushing that right now, leading into my next thing on branding. So if you want the updates go there really appreciate everybody coming through and who have listened to these.

Thank you very much and enjoy your week. Peace.[00:20:00]

Join our newsletter

checkmark Got it. You're on the list!
2020 Mr Benja