Most of us have a running dialogue in our head, where we typically conjure up all sorts of possible negative outcomes. Like a psychological game of Jenga, we stack precarious pieces of thought, one upon another, until they come crashing down in a pile of doubt and fear.
When we experience doubt and fear, we are subject to various effects. We brood. We become irritated. Maybe we snap at someone - family, friend, or stranger. We let it get under our skin. We let it become a burr under our saddle. We make a mountain out of a mole hill.
Acceptance. We hear the word all the time. What does it mean? Accept that other people do what they do mainly for reasons that have nothing to do with us. Accept that agonizing over real or perceived insults is almost always a complete waste of time, and may be unjustified entirely. Accept that the only person whose mind and conduct we can consistently alter is our own.
Discussing this topic reminds me of a saying which is pertinent. "I teach what I most need to learn." Any time I write about the importance of an individual following certain behaviors and avoiding others, I am most certainly speaking to myself, first and foremost.
Negativity creeps in while we ponder, while we move from thoughtful risk analysis to mentally running around the room with our hair on fire. It is easy to allow disappointment, hurt and fear to get into the driver's seat and take us on a joy ride which is anything but joyful.
Being aware that we can slip into negative thoughts, that we can begin to lose our positivity, we should endeavor through personal reflection to see our own behaviors and actions in context. Be self aware. Don't be afraid to tell yourself "hey, you need to ditch this negative attitude and make it positive." First get your head on right. Then see how your problems look with a clearer head.
If we make important decisions when we are hurt or angry (they tend to go hand-in-hand), we can end up costing ourselves in the long run. We can injure personal or business relationships. We can create more trouble with unwise actions in minutes than we can fix in years.
Make being positive a daily thought. Make it an anchor in your life. There are no quick fixes to life's problems, but a good attitude goes a long way toward making the journey more livable.
If I do not draw negative conclusions, if I remain positive about the actions of others, my life is enriched. Any time I find myself slipping out of a positive frame of mind, I sit myself down and have this discussion with myself.
© 2013, Jim “Pappy” Moore, All Rights Reserved.