A positive attitude can really change your life. Even when life is really dark and distressing, you can find things to feel thankful for. If you have been in a negative spiral for a while, it’s hard, but you can turn that around.
Have you ever noticed that everything seems to go wrong at the same time? It seems like negativity breeds more negativity. Well the same can be said for positivity. Watch sometime how just one good thing seems to lead to more good things happening. People on an upswing will say things like, “I’m on a roll now” or “someone up there must like me”. Think about how you feel when something good happens. It changes the way you look at people. It changes the way you walk. There’s a spring in your step. There’s a sparkle in your eye. People want to be around you. If you have a string of successes, you start to feel like you can do ANYTHING. You actually can do anything!
Maybe you are a student and you did really well on a test and then another test and another test. Maybe you had to have a difficult conversation with someone and your were afraid of what would happen to the relationship, but you started the conversation anyway. Then you find out the other person wanted to talk things over, too, and it went really well. The two of you came away with greater respect for one another and it changed the way you think of that person.
I have a saying that I try to live by. I am not sure where it stems from, but it has had a profound affect on my life. It is: “When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change”. Think about that. Can you change the way you look at things?
Are you sad and depressed about getting divorced? Well, that is not uncommon and it is OK to have those feelings. It is OK to feel everything you feel because those are your feelings and that makes you who you are. Own those feelings. Allow yourself those feelings. Just try not to dwell on them and stay stuck on the negative ones. If you want to dwell on the positive ones and stay stuck on those, have at it!! Those are the ones that inspire! If you are stuck on the negative, is there a way to look at that differently?
Divorce is hard, no doubt about that. Both sides, the petitioner and respondent will have a difficult time going through it, but rather than focus on how it messes up your life, maybe you can see it as an opportunity. My divorce turned out to be a very positive experience for me. Maybe this person wasn’t the right person for you, but now you can find the right person. Maybe this puts you in financial mess. What new career could you choose? Could you go to school to increase your income? Think of all the new people you would meet if you did! Do you think you’re not smart enough? You will surprise yourself! Maybe you were a little too dependent on your spouse for money or you didn’t give as much to the children as the other parent did. Well now there is nothing standing in your way. You get to do it your way!
I know what you’re thinking. It’s too hard. Everything in life is negative and there isn’t much to be happy about. Everyone is against me. I’m a a bad person. Yep. All those negative thoughts are swirling around. You can fight them. If you fill your mind with positive thoughts, there isn’t anymore room for the negative ones.
This change from negative to positive doesn’t happen over night so don’t be too hard on yourself if you start moving in a positive direction and then find yourself reverting back to some negative patterns here or there. That happens. Don’t sweat it. Just take a breather and go right back after it! Positivity. Think: I will be positive today. Here’s how to start…
Get up in the morning with a talk with yourself. I’m serious. Say to yourself, OK, self. We are not getting anywhere this way. We’re stuck. It is time to change that and dig our way out. Let’s do it. Staring today! Set a goal no matter how small. Make it something you can accomplish. If you have been living in anger and not giving your kids much attention, vow to give them 15 minutes of something fun together today. Maybe you can plan to read them a book after school. When the divorce/legal matters overwhelm you, it is easy to let yourself spend all your time on that and take time away from the kids, but the kids need you and should be your priority. They are hurting, too! Give yourself a little break from the stress. Even 15 minutes is a little vacation from the pits of hell. You can build on it as you start moving in a positive direction. You don’t have to set yourself up to fail. Start small so that you can achieve the first goal. As you get more practice, you will increase the time away from stress because you will crave it. It will become natural for you if you allow yourself the small steps toward change. Remember if you are not taking care of you, you are worthless to everyone else. I know that especially Moms feel guilty if they take time out for themselves, but if your battery is recharged regularly, you will have more energy for others.
So what are some ways to change your attitude? For starters, start being kind to strangers. Have you ever bitten someone’s head off for no reason other than you were dwelling in the fact that your life sucks right now? How can you stop that? Well, first off, think about it. Is it their fault your life sucks? Are you upset with this person or are they just readily available? Are you mad at your ex, but you can’t go off on them without repercussions so you target this poor unsuspecting person? You can learn to stop, to pause before reacting.
Here is an example. One time, when I was really, really stressed out and feeling like a loser because of all of my problems, I was shopping. I didn’t have much time or money for that, but I think it was Christmas time or one of the kids’ birthdays, I don’t recall which. Well, this particular day, I was in my usual bad mood and there was a really long line. Everyone was complaining. I looked at the cashier. I wanted to go off on him. I wanted to go off on the other people in line. Lucky for me, the waiting gave me time to think. I was suddenly feeling guilty due to the thoughts in my head (this is a time where guilt is good) and a sense of compassion came over me. I was ashamed of my thoughts. I decided that I did not have not attack this poor person. He was just trying to earn a living and it was not his fault that my life sucked. I decided that I wanted to be different than the complainers that day. So when my turn to pay came, I looked the cashier right in the eye, smiled, and said, “Wow, you are busy today, huh? You are doing a great job. I don’t think I could do as well under so much pressure.” The cashier’s entire demeanor changed. He brightened up. He smiled back and said, “I’m kind of new here and it has been challenging, but I’m learning and I do like it. Thanks for being so patient.” Well, I learned something that day. My attitude changed for that entire day. I suspect that the cashier’s attitude changed for at least his shift, too, but I also noticed that those after me were influenced by my compassion and everyone seemed to calm down a bit and for that brief while I experienced it, the darkness seemed to lift and not only was I more positive, but so was everyone around me. I started to read about positive thinking and the law of attraction and started to behave more positively everywhere and it made a difference. I stay positive today and when something negative happens, I can successfully turn it around.
Give it a try and see what happens. Positivity will breed more positivity and you will see changes in your life. Try to look at things in a new way. Life will be much more enjoyable and manageable. Let me know how it goes! I guarantee you won’t regret it! And if you need a little pep talk, give me a call or shoot me an email.
Now go grab the life you want! It’s yours for the taking!