Magical Movie MomentsMar 08, 2022
How our thoughts impact our results and how to have them create magical movie moments for you!
As an extension of this principle, I created magical movie moments to try to quickly shift my thinking and get better results.
What are Magical Movie Moments?
Magical Movie Moments are everyday moments – good, bad, ugly, funny – that you might see play out in a movie or on TV but are occurring in your everyday life. When we spot one, we quickly recognize that how we think about it will impact the “type” of movie we experience, so we choose the one that will bring us the most joy, happiness, peace, and positivity!
I have consistently used this practice for many years, and I saw it play out so clearly on my family’s most recent vacation. I hope you find my examples both comical and relatable in a way that helps you create your own magical movie moments. For each example, I’ll provide the story and the way it turned out or could have turned out if I had not used my 3M approach!
Super Mom Boards the Plane – The Real Story
My husband and I spent an entire day packing for our trip to Florida. It would be our first vacation since before I got pregnant with the twins more than three years ago. We picked the kids up from school and got through security with two hours to spare before our already delayed flight. Between getting kids fed, meltdowns, many potty trips, and walking the terminal, we lost track of time.
Suddenly, we were heading to the gate and realized the plane was already boarding and we’d missed family boarding. Even worse – we had not gotten a tag for the stroller. The agent at the terminal “let” me take the three kids and three carry-on bags onto the plane, while my husband went to get a stroller tag. My husband dashed off and I was officially boarding the plane with a 5-year-old, twin 2-year-old girls, and three carry-on bags. Both the twins started crying and my son refused to walk down the terminal for about ten seconds.
This was the moment – I knew it had “Magic Movie Moment” potential! I thought to myself, “This is ridiculous, I can’t believe this is happening but here we go! Oh Boy, this will make a great story!” Then, a nice young girl behind me offered me her help. I didn’t even know what help I needed. I just said, “We’ll be okay,” scooped up the twin crying harder, directed my son to take his other sister’s hand, and said, “Walk now. We are getting on the plane and it’s going to be so cool, so get excited!”
We walked down the terminal to the plane. As we waited to walk onto the plane, I told the kids in the most excited voice I could muster, “Alright, here is what we are going to do – Wyatt, you are going to get on first. Scarlett and Ella, you are going to follow Wyatt. You are going to walk down the aisle until I tell you to move into a row of seats. Just keep walking until I tell you to stop!” Wyatt took Scarlett’s hand, Ella took my free hand, and we walked onto the plane. The kids had wide eyes – they were excited for the plane flight.
Three little kids walked down the aisle with me dragging the three carry-on bags behind me. The whole scene was either comical or horrific, depending on what movie you were be watching! The nice girl helped push my bags down the aisle as I was struggling. The kids did amazing – they kept walking, no tears, and got to a row of seats at the back of the plane.
I quickly put the bags where they needed to go and then the kids realized Daddy wasn’t with us and started asking, “Where’s daddy? Is daddy coming?” I replied (not even considering another possibility), “Yes, daddy will be here soon. He just had to leave the stroller.” The kids were a little apprehensive but calm as they looked out the windows of the plane. My husband eventually made it (one of the last to board) and we were all together again. He said, “I’m sorry that didn’t go as we thought it would, I hurried as fast as I could.” I responded with, “No worries! That was so funny, and the kids did great!”
I snapped a picture of us all and shared my adventure with family and friends saying how proud I was that I did it! I boarded a plane with three small children and bags all alone. It was a huge challenge and I accomplished it! I felt both relieved and proud of myself. This meant we got a positive outcome, with no fights or anger, just laughter at the experience.
How might the story have turned out if I had thought differently, and if I hadn’t decided to make it a magical movie moment?
Abandoned Boarding a Plane! – The Alternative Option
Instead, when my husband left to get the stroller tag, I could have immediately thought how stupid it was that my husband left with the stroller. I could have become infuriated at my husband for leaving me with all the bags and children and felt abandoned and angry at his choice of action to leave me alone and take the stroller.
I could have then yelled at my children to get moving, told them to stop crying “or else,” and created even more of a meltdown than I already had happening. My children, now scared, could have put up more resistance getting on the plane, become overwhelmed, and refused to walk down the aisle of the plane.
Then, once seated on the plane, I could have stewed in my anger and abandonment, waiting for my husband to get on so I could get angry with him. I could have yelled at him, “How could you have left me? What were you thinking? You are a terrible husband.” Or worse, my husband, knowing I would get angry, could have chosen not to get on the plane at all!
The result – a family fighting, kids hurt and upset, the start of a vacation ruined, and possibly the vacation ruined entirely by the inconvenient experience of boarding the plane.
Sunset on a Plane or Suffering on a Plane
Ever ridden on a plane with three small children who missed their naps?
They are overtired, so you become overtired with their antics and meltdowns, and entertainment options last only short periods of time! You alternate between iPad, playing, talking, drawing, and anything you can think of to keep them from kicking, screaming, hitting, making a scene, and disrupting other passengers – which you inevitably can’t prevent! This chaos can create a feeling of overwhelm, exhaustion, anger, and frustration.
OR you can say, “Let’s try to make this a Magic Movie Moment.”
Then you look for anything and everything that would make this movie into a comical, heartwarming adventure rather than a chaotic, horror-filled scene. I made sure to make a big deal about the plane taking off, getting special candy on the plane, and playing silly games with Mom and Dad. And, when the sun set while we were still in the sky – you look out the window at the beautiful skyline, take a deep breath, and find gratitude in being able to see such beauty while holding the ones you love (even while they exhaust you!).
Creating Magic Out of Meltdowns
On the second day of vacation, I wanted to take my son on a special trip with just my husband and I – something that doesn’t happen much in our family! We planned a trip to an ice cream shop. The trip started out magical – just how I wanted it to be. We went to the shop, he picked out his flavors, and we each took our ice cream out to sit in a beautiful area filled with parrots. Even when my son decided he didn’t like the flavors he picked, the store generously gave him a new flavor instead. It was magical… until it wasn’t anymore.
We decided to stop at one of the shops and my son picked out adorable t-shirts for his sisters and stuffed mermaids. And then he saw an off-brand 500-piece Lego set of a pirate ship! Now, normally on vacations I like to try to say “yes” when I can, but 500 pieces of a non-Lego brand... I knew it would be a disaster. Unfortunately, my son had decided he wanted it with all his heart and the full stubbornness of a five-year-old. I tried all my creative tactics – telling him I know how he feels and “Mommy likes to buy puzzles, but Daddy doesn’t like it when she does because they take too long and distract her!” Nothing worked and we moved into an ever-growing and expanding meltdown that appeared unstoppable.
We got to the car, and I googled Legos near me and found a toy store. I looked at my husband and said – “Please say yes, let’s try to turn this around.” I told my son we would go to this toy store and see what they had if he stopped crying. I told him I didn’t know if they had Legos and if he remained upset, we wouldn’t get anything from the store. But if he could accept that we tried and find something to play with at the new store, I would say yes. He was so excited. The tears disappeared, and we headed to the play store.
You know what my 5-year-old son picked at the toy store? Wooden building blocks. He wanted something he could build into different shapes and towers. I looked at my husband with such excitement. “Our son wants blocks – this is a win – say yes!” We got the blocks (along with some toy cars with a garage) and checked out. Meltdown over and we got an even better toy than Legos, because blocks can be played with totally independently. My son spent the next two hours building with those toys, happy as a clam! I felt such joy that we had transformed a meltdown into magic – all with some simple conversation and blocks!
How it could have gone? I could have decided my son was being ridiculous, felt angry he was being ungrateful for the ice cream and the things we did get him. I could have gotten angry at him for his meltdown, demanded he stop crying (which likely would have meant more crying and yelling), and the trip would have ended in sadness and frustration rather than joy. A totally different outcome – based on one simple thought!
Bugs on the Beach
I wanted to see the beautiful sunset on the beach. My twin girls wanted to come along as well. My son (with his new blocks) decided to stay inside and keep playing. My parents warned us of the potential of no-see-um bugs on the beach at dusk. I put bug spray on myself and my twin girls (but forgot my husband). The four of us headed to the beach. We got waylaid with the twins wanting to be picked up and not wanting sand in their shoes.
By the time we got to the beach, my husband noticed he was covered in these little black bugs. We weren’t sure if they were no-see-ums or if they were even biting us. But we were there, and we wanted to see the sunset. We snapped some beautiful pictures super-fast – the girls were smiling and laughing with the sun setting in the background. We could have gotten angry, frustrated, or upset about the bugs. My husband could have yelled at me for not reminding him to use bug spray.
Instead, we stayed focused on the beauty, laughter, and the short moment of the sun setting. My husband dunked his legs in the ocean, and when the sun set, we ran up to the room again!
Vomit follows us everywhere
With a family of five and three kids in school – it seems vomiting happens quite regularly... including on vacation. While visiting family over Thanksgiving, my son, one of my twins, and I all got some sort of stomach bug. While my son recovered quickly, I was stuck in bed for two days, and then my daughter got sick on our ride home. My husband and other twin somehow managed to avoid this illness that week.
Then, on our vacation one week later, one of my daughters vomited after her nap. At first, we thought it was just from coughing because she recovered quickly. Then that night, my husband suddenly started not feeling well. He made it clear he needed to go to bed, and overnight he started vomiting from a stomach bug that kept him in bed the whole next day. Then my mom was next – by noon that day she was sick and in bed. My dad and I forged on with the kids, trying to keep the vacation fun. By the following night, my dad was the next victim to this silly bug.
We had a choice... we could think about how unlucky we were to get sick on vacation, how unfair it was, and let it ruin our time or even allow the sickness to make us turn on each other with frustration and anger.
Instead, we thought – let’s make this a comedy!
We made jokes about vomit. We expressed thoughts and feelings of gratitude that we weren’t all taken down at once. We were glad that we could each take the time to recover because someone else was healthy enough to watch the kids! We appreciated the support and care we received while sick instead of getting angry because we were stuck in bed while others had fun!
The outcome – our sickness became a joke rather than a nightmare!
As you live your life, start to recognize those critical moments when you get to choose how you think about your situation, circumstance, or an event. What you think about your life experience is going to massively impact your results. Over time you’ll get better at spotting them, and when you do, you can intentionally choose to think thoughts that create positive moments for you and your family.
Turn horror into humor.
Turn anger into joy.
Turn frustration into growth.
Turn sadness into happiness!
Transform your thoughts, make magical moments, and bring joy to your family!
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