Every once in awhile I come across something that inspires me to look inside myself and reevaluate. As someone who is perpetually interested in growing my character (and apparently my waistline but THAT’S a different blog post) I subscribe to the belief that we are people in motion. There is always time enough to become a better version of ourselves and though childhood experiences and circumstances certainly shape the people we become, we have an amazing responsibility to fine tune the people we are. And that is a fluid effort.
One area in which I am particularly invested is to cultivate better balance in the way I perceive, handle and ultimately share with others, my life’s lemons. From the minor annoyances to the most grievous situations, there is room for change there. For most of us.
Stand in any public place and you will undoubtedly hear all manners of complaints.
“Gah, my feet are killing me. I hate these shoes.”
“Seriously, could this clerk be taking ANY longer?”
“I’m telling you, if my husband leaves his dirty clothes on the floor one more time…”
“My kids are driving me absolutely crazy…”
Do any of these sound familiar? Let me get something straight. Not all is always bright and cheery in this corner of the world and I’ve certainly used one or all of the above examples (plus a few ripe ones not appropriate for this blog) a multiple of times on a multiple of days. I’m certainly not immune to the basic instinct to complain, to recognize and point out the negative aspects of a situation. But the practice of habitual complaining has a price and your psyche pays a heavy toll. That negativity begins to steal your ability to employ optimism. To see the bright side. Luckily, we have a choice.
Find the joy. Look for the positive. Fill your glass half-full. It’s there, right beside the negative, just waiting to be recognized and pointed out. It may take some practice to become second nature as we have become accustomed to accepting criticism as a God-given right but I assure you, the miracles of a joy-driven life are worth the effort.
Yes, I said miracles.
Those who are burdened with the weight of their own constant complaints miss a miracle. A miracle that occurs when you start speaking out loud your joys. Miraculously, you encounter more joy. Things become funnier. People become nicer. Experiences become greater. And complaints become far less important. Frankly, crap still happens and things still annoy you, but its impact on you and your happiness drastically lessens. That, my friends, is a priceless choice.
A whole world of beauty opens up to those with eyes willing to see it.
Open your eyes.