Roll your eyes. Just do it, because I’m going to use a cliché. Don’t believe me, huh? Fine, “It’s all about attitude, a positive attitude.” Told you I was going to throw out a clichéd whopper.
When we’re in a total funk we feel like we’re choking on that cliché. Once we come out of our security blanket of negativity, we learn it’s 85% true. You thought I was going to say 100%. Nope. Because sometimes life has to beat us down. We have to go through those lows to appreciate the highs.
Think of it like a gorgeous tree in your yard. When you first saw that tree in full bloom, it brought you joy. You fell in love with it. Five years down the road it’s become commonplace, you don’t feel the same joy anymore. Now, you find the faults: It drops leaves into the gutters, it’s barren in the winter, and the roots are cracking through the concrete.
It takes going on a vacation or visiting someone whose yard is a dried-up postage stamp for you to come home and see that beauty again.
That is the 15% negativity we have to experience in life. That is what will help us appreciate all we’ve been blessed with again. The other 85% is attitude. If we don’t get out of our funk we’ll find our negativity sucking the life out of positive time. We can’t let that happen.
Here are three tips I’ve used to get my attitude back on track. Try one, try three. Repeat as necessary.
Lean on the Tried and True Biggies
- Be thankful for a roof overhead, even if the roof is attached to four wheels, it’s a roof. Even if it’s leaking, there are dry spots.
- Be thankful for family and friends. Doesn’t matter if you don’t talk to them every single day. All that matters is there is someone out there thinking about you.
Take whatever teeny-tiny blink of a positive you can get:
- You made two green lights out of the four intersections you crossed to get to the store.
- The guy that cut you off waved. The wave that says: Yeah, I totally messed up, sorry about that.
- The toothpaste you needed was on sale.
When all else fails, create a positive:
- You were running late so you wouldn’t cross paths with a jack-knifing semi. Since you weren’t there, you’re safe and the semi driver is safe because he was able to correct his rig.
- The glass broke because if it hadn’t done it now, it would have when your child grabbed it. Since it just nicked your skin, your son was saved three stitches in his thumb.
- You didn’t get that super-cool, awesome job because five months from now your superior was going to throw you under the bus to save his hide when his boss discovered missing money from the petty cash box. Since you didn’t get the job, you don’t have to worry about explaining those black marks on your resume at your next interview.
One piece of advice: When all is bleak do NOT count working appliances as a positive.
Or, at least don’t count them aloud. I have a theory that manufacturers have programmed voice-activated self-destruct mechanisms into appliances. Upon hearing any statement similar to, “Our refrigerator (dishwasher or stove) is still working,” Pffft! The appliance will die.
These may not be the most glamorous or scientific tips, but they work.
Now, go find your positive. And, when you do, please come back and share. No matter how eensy-weensy or super-jumbo sized the positive may be, it gives us all another thing to look for when we’re struggling.