The Day Challenge to A More Positive Perspective

I had the privilege of attending a graduation party for a friend of ours that just completed her master's course after the wonderful age of 40. Exact age will be withheld because she doesn't look or act her age. As I mingled with people mostly of higher educational backgrounds, I realized how cynical the world we live in truly is.

I also discovered how little faith we have in others and ourselves. This wasn't anything directed at any single person or this exact situation just an overall feeling. I realized I was able to remain grateful in spite of the negativities in the world, but I had to make a conscious effort.

My business partners and I are close to our one-year anniversary of charting a course with our lives that would allow us to define how our days are spent and what our priorities are. For example, up until recently I had no idea the value of a pool in the summer because I was never home before 6:30 p.m.

having left the house at 6:30 a.m. Now that I can have charge over my own schedule I can make time during the day for such activities as swimming. I have gained something that cannot be purchased.

I am able to take my daughter to school this year before she gets her license and no longer needs me to drive her. Now I can go to all her sporting events and cheer her on as well as celebrate the wins with her and her friends. Today I realized there were moments in my past that I was just as cynical and negative toward anyone that thought life could be lived outside the corporate structure.

Not today. After being eliminated from a company at which I gave all my time and helped generate millions of dollars in revenue by establishing new products and relationships, I now know the only thing that stopped me from doing this for myself was myself. When faced with unemployment for the first time in my life I realized I was actually quite lucky. I was capable of going out into the world and making for myself and my partners the same opportunities I had been making for my previous employer. My departure had no impact on them to the outside world, and if it did inside those walls nobody knew it.

So why would I let them have any impact on me especially any negative impact? Why would I question my skills or abilities when they never bothered to? I took a very negative situation and found reasons to be grateful. In a very negative world with gas prices up and the economy down we are constantly bombarded with all that is wrong with the world and our lives. If you think it is so bad in the United States, consider this: - In Norway the cost of gas is over $7.00 per gallon and yet our gas, while it may be at $4, that is only an average of $1.00 more than a year ago.

It is still less than in Europe. - While unemployment rates may be above 5% we are still not the worst country. Additionally, there are still jobs posted in all the newspapers every week. - Those of you living in the U.

S., regardless of your address, are not woken by air attacks in the middle of the night. - The sun will rise and set and with it the most priceless beauty freely to observe. - While some may find life isn't as easy as others we at least have life. I know too many that died too young.

Now you ask, what is the point I am trying to make with this article? Here it is. Life to each of us holds different challenges and opportunities. That isn't the real thing that separates us.

What separates each one of us from everyone else is how we approach each day and all it brings. In a cynical world we can jump on board and join everyone else. In a world that constantly tells us how bad things are we can buy into it and find worse circumstances to add to it. That is our choice. The 30-day plan my partners and I used went as follows: We each wrote in a journal each day for 30 days. One day one, we wrote one thing we were grateful for.

It was difficult to select just one. Then on day two, we wrote two things; day three we wrote three things and so on. Each day we added one more until we got to day 30 and a list of 30 things we were grateful for in that single day.

It doesn't matter if you are grateful for the same thing on more than one day. Just try it. Write them down.

Then when 30 days have passed look back and see if maybe the way you see the world has also changed. It is possible to stay positive in a negative world. Copyright (c) 2008 Wavelet Productions.

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