So, it was last spring while I was working on the logistics of a pioneer trek when I first became acquainted with the phrase, "It is what it is." In the beginning I did not give it too much notice. Whenever something would not go as planned with the logistics of the trek someone almost always was there to say with a sigh, "It is what it is." The phrase caught my attention right away. I had never heard it before. Pretty soon it felt like I was surrounded by this maddening phrase. It seemed to be around every corner taunting me. I never liked it and I confess I can not imagine I ever will. Yes, it is very possible I am one of "those people"... those who are determined that no matter what it is it definitely is not what it is. Yeah, I am sure this is not healthy. I thought once trek was over I would not hear the phrase anymore but imagine my amazement when people I know I had known for years started randomly saying it. I had never noticed that so many people said this phrase. It seemed to apply to every word that came out of my mouth and every experience I seemed to be having. It was everyone's answer to me. Anytime I would try to figure something out, or fix something, or try to make something right I was haunted by the words "It is what it is." Is it true? Is there a point where it really is what it is? It feels like giving up to me to say that. Sigh, I fear this means I am not a let it go kind of girl and this is not good news. I wonder who started this rumor that "It is what it is" ?
Uh oh I am wondering and you know what that means...yep, I just googled "It is what it is" and I have to tell you what I learned. First of all this phrase was voted by USA Today as the number one cliche in 2004. It is a very popular phrase within circles of coaches and business execs. I am neither..just FYI :)
If you happen to find yourself saying it the thing you really want to be saying is something along the lines of... it happened and I am going to forget about it and I am going to move on.It is a phrase that seems to simply state the obvious but actually implies helplessness. Yeah, I had to read that last part a few times too :) Try this one, direct from Wikipedia ...brace yourself..."it is a phrase that indicates the unchangeable nature of an object or circumstance." WHAT? Is there really a point when something can not be changed? Why does that make me sad...okay, and a little crazy? :) It makes me feel determined which should not be an overly cozy thought for anyone around me :)
I was pleasantly surprised to find a link to a song with this phrase as it's title by one of my favorite groups, Lifehouse, I attempted to post a link to it so hopefully it works. I hated that it sounded like they were giving up in the song but even as I write that I find a teeny tiny spot deep inside my little soul that tells me there must be some situations where you finally have to admit defeat and say "It is what it is" and there is nothing more I can do so maybe there is hope for me after all.
It is what it is by Lifehouse
When I hear the words, "It is what it is" I feel so sad and so hopeless. They are very hard words for me to accept. Are you sure there is nothing I can do? Nothing that can change? Nothing that can make things better? Maybe it is time for me to stop fighting and just accept that "It is what it is" :)