Especially first thing in the morning, and last before going to sleep.
It’s easy to wake up with negative thoughts, no? And for sure if you’re not an “Oh, what a beautiful morning!” type of person. Because you probably woke up grumbling to begin with.
Ah, to stay in that wonderful bed would be so nice . . .
I know people who wake up singing. I’m just not one of them. Get me some coffee and all that changes, but right off the bat . . . well.
And if I don’t get a handle on the negative to begin, things can sure spiral downward in a hurry.
So the first thing I do (after letting out dogs!) to avoid negative thinking is to consciously set my mind right. Sounds easy, no? And often it is.
Sometimes it takes a bit more work. So right off the bat, my focus becomes about gratitude.
Thank you for another day.
Thank you that the sun is shining. Or rain is falling.
Thank you for . . .
Things always exist to be grateful for. Count five of them (even if through gritted teeth) as you do your morning routine, and even before that first cup of coffee you’ll find a smile.
Setting the mind in the right direction to begin the day pays enormous dividends. You can then pat yourself on the back for caring for you as well.
And as the day progresses, that gratitude list will arise when you most need a boost.
Then right before retiring, give yourself a big pat on the back. Count the blessings of the day. And most importantly, thank yourself for the things you did well. Yep, some mistakes were bound to occur. Wish I woulda done it this way. Wish I hadn’t of said that. Wish . . .
But now is not the time for that. You probably beat yourself up when it happened anyway!
Now is the time to acknowledge the goodness in you, your strengths, the kindness that you showed, the task that you did well.
Because a funny thing about the subconscious mind—it hears that. And right before bed, when you’re going into dreamland, you want to give that subconscious positive images to dwell upon through the night.
It’s working overtime then—when you’re conscious mind is at rest.
And you’ve just given it positive food to build on, like some sort of osmoses in your sleep.
We know the secret of happiness, no?
To live in love rather than fear. And a big way to do that is through gratitude. Gratitude for your creator (whatever you believe that to be), for another day to be alive, and as importantly, for the you and the life you are creating.
You are important to this world. Remember and honor that, and there is no limit to what you can achieve, and the happiness you can find.
We need your gifts. And in order to give them effectively, we need you to be the best you that you can be.
Even Groucho Marx used this prescription! And he certainly made a gazillion people happy:
“Each morning when I open my eyes I say to myself: I, not events, have the power to make me happy or unhappy today. I can choose which it shall be. Yesterday is dead, tomorrow hasn’t arrived yet. I have just one day, today, and I’m going to be happy in it.” The Essential Groucho: Writings For By And About Groucho Marx
How do you reward yourself?