Attitude? What Attitude?

Attitude?  What Attitude?

depressed2When I look back at my husband’s situation with his mother, and how she’s chosen her path of negativity, my heart really aches for her. I’m always feeling torn between offering my time to help her, and then hear about everything I did wrong, or just keep my distance. The only good thing about this situation is the fact that she does this to EVERYONE, except her “favorite” son–my husband. I want to offer my time because my husband’s schedule is so tight, but the negative words won’t just be spoken once; instead, he’ll hear about every detail over and over again for years to come. Unfortunately, she fills her life with negativity.

I don’t know if any of you can relate to my dilemma, but if you can, know that you are not alone. I learned years ago that forgiveness has to come from the mind, heart and soul and then, and only then, can a person move beyond the emotional pain that the situation or person has caused. But in a situation like this, it just never seems to be enough. No matter what good gestures are offered, some people just love to find the bad in every situation they can. They eat, live and breathe negativity. So how can we stop this cycle?

Reality TV and Donuts What is your attitude like after you’ve watched a reality TV show where words are bleeped out of almost every sentence and people argue for most of the show? Do you find yourself snapping at a family member or does that negativism seem to linger on in your mind? How healthy is that for our brain? For our family relationships? This season, I will ask that you assess your attitude after you view those shows and consider changing your viewing to more wholesome, educational channels.

So what do donuts have to do with these negative feelings? Everything. Watching something external and realizing how it affects your mood is much easier to stop than you might think. But what about the internal stories that bombard your mind in between the “drama” of reality shows? Now those are much more difficult to deal with! They creep in at all hours of the day and night. They tell you you’re not good enough. They tell you to hold on that anger or fear. They play over and over in your brain like a forgotten album on the turntable (hey, did this just date me?).

This Christmas season, I want to offer you many positive thoughts that come with the sunshine, that come with the person who held the door open for you or the kind police officer who let you off with a warning for driving on mental auto pilot. This season, pay very close attention to the positive attitudes of others as, they spread the Christmas joy. When you allow your brain to focus on looking for those small acts of kindness, you will be totally amazed at how often they will present themselves to you. If you don’t believe me, test it out, then let me know if you are still a disbeliever. With every small kind gesture someone shows you, why not pay it forward to someone else? This also opens your eyes to more positive things around you.

Charles Swindoll wrote, “I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% how I react to it”. So I hope each and every one of you will take time to find the positive things in life and extend a helping hand, a kind word or a genuine Thank You to the people around you. But do me one more favor – carry that out beyond this season and allow it to trickle or pour into the rest of the year, and eventually into your everyday lives.

So this is my opportunity to give you a sincere thank you for taking time to read my newsletters and blog and for making my life so much richer than it was a year ago. My gift to you is the poem from Charles Swindoll called Attitudes. I’ve posted this up in every office I’ve ever worked in since I moved to VA. I have had more requests for a copy of it than my published recipe got! Enjoy reading and sharing it.

From my home to yours, may you have a blessed, warm and wonderful Christmas and New Year!!  And may  the next snowfall linger around for at least a few days to play in!!   😉

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