Sunday, September 23, 2007

It's a matter of attitude

For some time now I have been making a conscious effort to improve my quality of life and focus on the positive things that happen around me. I can see and feel the difference. I look each day for at least three things that made me feel good, enhanced my life or benefited my personal growth. At the end of the day I write down the top three items that made my list. What this has done is help me continually look for things to put on my list throughout the day, trying to knock out one of the previous top three.

Not every day's list is earth shattering but even the subtle, seemingly insignificant things I have noticed make a positive difference. Here are just a few things that have been on my recent lists (1) New pictures of Layla. (2) I love the way my sheets feel against my skin. (3) Hit a great sale at Garden Ridge (4) The temperature dropped 10 degrees. Beautiful day. (5) My feather pillow is the best!!! (6) Started a new book. It's a fast read - love it. (7) Extra money today. (8) Tried a new recipe for spinach salad - love it!! (9) Found my lost butterfly earring. (10) Received two big compliments from Jeff and Marty. (11) The real cherry in my Sonic drink. (12) Sudoku

Rather than focus on the length and time it takes me to make a certain trip I have to drive frequently, I have started to purposely looked for the positive aspects of the drive . The construction on that entrance ramp is finally complete and I don't have to hold my breath as I maneuver through concrete barriers. I can see the Dallas skyline 20 miles away. I have learned which lane to be in for the fastest, smoothest travel. My toll tag keeps me from having to fish for change. My MPG improves. I have time to listen to the music on my ipod, starting with a different letter of the alphabet each time. Thank heaven for cell phones and open stretches of highway. NPR has some great programs! Bumper stickers. A glimpse of the string of red cars on the Six Flags roller coaster. A beautiful crimson and orange sunset. Yes, this change in attitude has made the trips go faster.

Now, we can't always avoid negative things from time to time but we do have a choice as to whether or not we let those negative people or actions influence us. Where it is possible, I avoid interacting with people that take pleasure in another's misfortune or who build themselves up by putting others down. Who needs that kind of negative energy? No one.

Making it a point to recognize the good things can change us positively. It can improve our quality of life and give us more energy. I know this is not original with me but it has dawned on me that I am working on my gratitude attitude. Excellent!!