Some people enjoy being miserable, me….I just like smiling, so please stay away from me with your negative attitude.
Lately it seems I am running into more people with negative attitudes. They seem to find fault everywhere but in themselves. As you know I believe each of us gets to see in the world through objective eyes and when we do we can discern good and bad, ugly and beautiful. When we do we learn that there is plenty of good out there for each of us if we are willing to see it and then embrace what it has to offer.
It may be my old age but I have started to avoid the chronic complainers. I don’t know if it my fear of being infected with their destructive attitude or my unwillingness to devote any time to be unhappy.
If you know someone who could use an attitude adjustment why not be a good Samaritan and help them learn to enjoy life. Here are some ideas that may help.
3 Paths to Squash a Negative Attitude (edited)
By Brianna Johnson
Many of us are champions of maintaining bad moods. For some, it’s even a default mode. Unfortunately, it can be incredibly easy to trade in your vigor, dreams, and self-worth for wages, traffic jams, and mindless meme-browsing. Sometimes it’s even expected of us. If you wake up sighing, head to work grunting obscenities, and haven’t had exciting weekend plans in years, congratulations. You’ve slipped into the dismal neurosis many call “the daily grind.”
People disregard who they are. We have goals that we give up on, or maybe we never try to achieve them at all. Many of us don’t develop our talents or contribute to anything outside of ourselves. We might aim low, expending only enough effort to hold down a miserable job to afford rent and greasy take-out dinners. While greasy take-out is delicious in its own disturbing way, it makes perfect sense that we don’t even want to crawl out of bed in this scenario. No doctors, shrinks, or medications are needed. Its obvious: humans have high potential, and we can’t expect to thrive while on autopilot.
- Negativity is simply a habit. (The brute force path)
The scariest thing about the human mind is that it does what we tell it to do. Our minds get stuck in those carved out routines that often serve no good purpose. However, thanks to neuroplasticity, we can give our brains a push through self-awareness and genuine effort. If we relentlessly keep doing positive things, we will eventually begin to tip those stubborn scales.
- Negativity is a byproduct of something. (The underlying meaning path)
It can be the lingering result of unresolved loss or disappointment. It can be as profound as a death in the family or just a general sense of life-suck. Either way, negativity doesn’t show up on it’s own.
When your life is aligned with your values, negativity dissipates naturally. So it’s not really your attitude that needs an adjustment- it’s probably your circumstances.
- Negativity is a call to action. (The ‘make changes’ path)
Of course, all the thinking in the world means nothing unless you decide on concrete steps and complete them. Being a downer isn’t a natural human state. It’s a sign that something is not working, and it’s being brought to your attention.
We need to first ask ourselves what’s missing, and second, what we can realistically do about it. Everyone has his or her own specific reasons for being down, and it may not be obvious. You may need to add something (relaxation), or subtract something (your horrible neighbors). You’ll need to ask yourself a lot of uncomfortable questions that start with “how” and “why.”
And don’t worry about those people who tell you that you’re stupid for making life-changing plans. They are likely stuck in the same vat of molasses-like negativity that you are. And worse, they probably have no idea. This is why self-awareness is essential, as it can be an incredibly eye-opening catalyst.
As soon as we master the elusive “good attitude,” we find that our own pessimism was adding onto our other problems, making them harder to solve. Positivity on the other hand, is like a giant net. Once you learn to cast it out, you catch all sorts of awesome things that you otherwise wouldn’t have found. People treat you better, you treat them better, and life overall improves.
We all belong somewhere different. If you are not where you want to be, doing what suites you best, negativity is going to manifest somehow. Negativity is secondary. It comes from a lack of direction, disappointment, or some other perceived issue that you haven’t resolved. Regardless of how the ball and chain was attached, you can unchain it through purposeful action.
You cannot have a positive life and a negative mind.
My teenaged niece Elizabeth was nervous as she took the wheel for her first driving lesson. As she was pulling out of the parking lot, the instructor said, “Turn left here, and don’t forget to let the people behind you know what you’re doing.”
Elizabeth turned to the students sitting in the back seat and announced, “I’m going left.”
Happiness cannot come from without. It must come from within. It is not what we see and touch or that which others do for us which makes us happy; it is that which we think and feel and do, first for the other fellow and then for ourselves.
On his honeymoon, a very thick redneck farmer, Billy Joe, insisted on having a room at the luxury hotel with a balcony overlooking the sea. On retiring for the night after the wedding, his new bride emerged from the bathroom dressed in some very sexy lingerie.
“Hey Billy Joe, come in off the balcony and see what I have waiting for you to savor for the first time” she said coyly.
“No thanks, I want to sit out here,” he said.
So Daisy sat down brushing her golden hair for 10 minutes after which she invited Billy Joe once more to come in off the balcony to take pleasure of her virginal body. Once more he refused. Eventually Daisy grew tired of waiting and she retired to the wedding bed and fell asleep.
In the morning, she awoke to find him still sitting on the balcony.
“Why did you spend the whole night out there when you could have been making love all night?” she asked.
“Well my pa said the first night of my marriage would be the most beautiful night of my whole life – and I didn’t want to miss a moment of it.”
Yesterday is experience, tomorrow is hope, today is getting from one to the other.
At a lecture on psychic phenomena in a Comparative Religions course, the instructor told about a woman who contacted police working on a missing persons case.
“She gave them eerily detailed instructions on where to find the body,” the instructor said. “And in fact, the detectives did find the body just as she had described. Now, what would you call this type of person?”
While the rest of the class pondered the question, a sheriff’s deputy taking the class raised his hand and replied, “A suspect.”
Every day we have plenty of opportunities to get angry, stressed or offended. But what you’re doing when you indulge these negative emotions is giving something outside yourself power over your happiness. You can choose to not let little things upset you.
Stay well, do good work, and have fun.
Management is not responsible for duplicates from previous dailies. The editor is somewhat senile.
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