Wednesday, February 29, 2012

My way of thinking/ Finding the Positive

A dear friend recently asked me to write about finding the positive in everything.  I replied that I thought that was pretty much what I have been writing about all this time.  But she said that I need to spell it out step by step.  Okay,  I am up for a challenge.

First and foremost, having a positive attitude begins with you.  You can't look at the world around you as positive if you aren't going to be positive yourself.  So step one is to make a personal choice to create your own positive contribution to the process.  Everyone has the power to make this kind of choice.  I believe that we choose how we want to be perceived by those around us.  We can blame others all we want for the way we are, but in the end, it really is our own choice that defines us.

Step number 2 is to begin applying our positive outlook to everything that presents itself to our personal space.  I know, that seems hard but it really is quite simple.  Not every situation can be looked at as positive.  The trick is to find a positive action that we can take in any given situation.  A mother and her small children are killed by a drunk driver.  Nothing positive there.  But we can take a positive action.  We can offer our love and support to the family.  We can send a card.  We can cook dinner for those left behind.  Love is always positive.  There is no negative that can stand up to the power of love.

Step number 3 is putting this principle into practise.  This takes a little work and concentration.  When something that seems negative enters our personal world, or space if you prefer, we have to empower ourselves by finding the positive within ourselves.  We then look for ways to trust our inner power to stand up to whatever seems negative and bring something optimistic to the person or situation.  We begin to look for the good within ourselves instead of expecting it to come from something or someone externally.  Remember that there IS no negative in love, empathy, or compassion.  These things come from within, from our soul.  Apply these gifts and the rest will take care of itself.

If this seems simplistic, that's because it IS simple.  It all comes back to you.  It comes down to the choices you make.  We all have the power to choose what kind of person we want to be.  We can't control everything around us.  We CAN control our own hearts and mind.  All we have to do is recognize our responsibility to find and share the best part of ourselves.  We really can choose to be happy.  There can be no negative in a happy attitude towards life.  Look for all those positive yes words.  Stop saying no when a challenge presents itself.  Think about giving and forget about getting.  You may be pleasantly surprised by how much easier life can be.

Norman Vincent Peale wrote "The Power of Positive Thinking" a long time ago.  It is still relevant today.  Also "Begin With Yes" by Paul Boynton (a Facebook friend) is a helpful and easy read on this subject.  Remember that everything begins with you.  That's where it ends as well.

                                          Peace and Love,




  1. It really is simple, isn't it? Choices.... Lovely piece Austin!!! ♥♥♥

  2. I just can't thank you enough, Lisa. You are a wonder!

  3. Bill, It is all about choices! I would add one more: you can choose to think the best of others. When out with Robert, even though people may look at him because he's wearing a helmet and using a walker, I assume they are coming from a good place and are just curious and not mean-spirited. I always told my kids, "you get what you give" and you, Bill, give a lot to make the world more positive!

    caregiving. family. advocacy.

  4. So right, Trish! Because I am in the wheelchair,people are curious to know why. It is always an opportunity to open up a conversation. Often I get them to adopt a pet. Everything can have something positive to it. All in what we choose to see.

    Much Love,


  5. A good revisit....made me remember what a good post this was back when I first read it! Great reminder!

  6. Nice article Bill,

    It's definitely about what you put out there...

    People want to interact, they need to comfort or be comforted by those around them. This come out especially when there is a crisis. I've long said that people crave that village... and because the last 20 years have made us more mobile we're away from 'our village' in small nuclear groups. In the UK they called it the blitz spirit and if they didn't have something to rally around any advantage or 'disadvantage' helps, an opportunity to open a conversation. For you and I Bill our apparent 'vulnerability' might make us less likely to walk away and ignore them.

    I remember when I was in a wheelchair people would be amazed at how I could change a babies diaper on my lap (what choice did I have I had a newborn and a 2 year old and couldn't stand up!)- but I'd smile and say it's just practice (now I have to rely on my on my accent to open the barriers).

    Once they realize you are approachable and both sides get over the initial hurdles of personal space and 'privacy' we're leapfrogged into a realm of almost being friends, then the draw bridge is down.

    It is our vulnerability which allows people in, and whether that comes from from a place of strength (empathy) or weakness (pain) being open to the good in people allows for healing.

    ** I have to say Bill that I am always amazed at what replying to one of your posts does for my writing skills. Although I've fallen off the blogging wagon due to time and the micro blogging I do on the @PureEssenceLabs Facebook and twitter I always feel like I should post what I write on your blog onto mine and just expand. It's like a mini therapy session ~ you obviously just bring out the best in people.

    Laine D.

  7. Laine, you can't possibly know how much you inspire me. I wish that you would write your blog again. I am so blessed to know someone like you. I think of you during times when I need a true human who will always lift me up. When I say " I love you " I MEAN it from my heart!

  8. Thank you dear friend!

    I keep starting to write and rework it in my head but never quite get it to a finished state. Several of our mutual friends say have 'publishing' anxiety... I suppose it is fear of not looking professional or worthy ( I spent over a decade being told that I could research but was not worthy of making the decisions which effectively took my voice away.. when I get stressed the feelings of self doubt assail me) and of course there is the other thing...time! My duties as a Mom, making a living etc. Although I make a living writing I don't write as myself.

    I am realizing that I'm writing more and more but its in the micro blogging formats I spoke of analyzing articles and providing digested headlines or intros. Obviously I just have to have faith in myself to publish in my own voice rather than appearing as someone else.

    Another great shrink session!

    Thanks hon.
    Laine D.

  9. Laine, every time I click on the publish button, I freak a little. Did I say too much? Did I make myself clear? Did I even have a right to say whatever I just Sid?

    Writing is a gift. It is an expression from the heart. This is a gift to you, dear friend. You have an obligation to share your beautiful soul. It hurts sometimes to share things we might want to keep secret. But when all is said and done, the love you receive outweighs the doubts and fears. Being positive takes vigilance and perseverance. I lose my way once in awhile, but getting back on track is part of the process.