Turn a Negative into a Positive

Can we have a moment of silence for my fallen headphones? I jumped on the treadmill; my headphones got snagged and snapped.

For the next half hour I wallowed. Ugh, I spent $40 for those. Now I have to go and get a new pair. My entire workout was ruined.

I made a conscious decision to let it ruin my workout. I allowed broken headphones to affect me. I chose to perceive the situation as wholly negative and submersed myself in turmoil.

After wallowing, I remembered some advice Steven gave me: Don’t sweat the little things. They are insignificant in the big picture. 

Don’t let it ruin your happiness

Today, a friend complained that she was having the worst day ever because she missed her bus.

She caught the next bus and made it to school. Was it really worth letting her entire day get ruined? It made me think about my fallen headphones.

Was I really going to let $40 and the errand of getting new ones ruin the entirety of my day? Steven is right, in the big picture, it is very insignificant.

In the big picture, she caught the next bus. She made it. She’s here now. She should leave that ill feeling in the past. Instead, she carried it with her like a ball and chain, weighing her down, slowly draining her happiness.

People let insignificant problems ruin their minutes, hours, and days. The first little problem surfaces, the effect snowballs, then suddenly you’re lost in the ‘worst day ever’ syndrome.

As you progressively become grouchier, it could snowball to the next day. You make the conscious decision to grumble and scowl. People around you notice and avoid you.

Your relationships are affected. Your work is affected. But worst of all, your mind is affected. Happiness begins to feel like a distant memory – all over headphones, a missed bus or whatever other small problem is weighing you.

Always-turn-a-negative-situation

Is there a Bright-side?

I believe that every situation has a positive and a negative. Some positives are harder to see in the darkness of a problem, but it is there. It’s a tiny glimmering light, just waiting to be discovered.

My broken headphones did impact my day, but for the positive. I chose to be more social. I was able to listen to people and engage with them.

I made a friend. I helped someone in need. I gave a compliment to random stranger. Three positive outcomes over a problem that could have been day-ruining.

If I had seen the negatives and scowled, could I have made a new friend or helped someone? Could I have made someones’ day through my words? Possibly, but I wouldn’t receive the same effect. It would have been cast away and overshadowed by my miserable mindset.

In our daily lives, small problems continually erupt. Sometimes we let our brain take over, and we make large out of the miniscule.

The odd time when we do encounter a large problem, it’s okay to feel down for a little while. It’s therapeutic but after that, pull yourself out and start figuring out a solution. Start looking for that little glimmering light.

Next time you encounter a problem, place it in the bigger picture. Change your perspective to change the way you perceive problems.

You possess the sole authority. You are the general, captain and private of your mind. Consciously choose happiness, consciously choose positivity and constantly seek that little glimmering light.

Be bold, be free, and love on.

Thanksgiving Celebrations

I woke this morning to a rather pleasant surprise. This blog almost has a THOUSAND followers. That’s huge. Almost a thousand people are reading my work. I am honored and incredibly thankful.

Today is also the national Canadian day of thanks. Tonight, people will be sitting down at their long dining table with their extended family, using the coveted silverware.

Not me.

Thanksgiving has never been a big event for me. Then again, no holiday has ever been a big event in my house. Everything just gets swept under the rug.

One reason: My family is broken.

So today, there will be no turkey carving ceremonies. No grandiose meals, filled with laughter. No drunken uncle bumbling around telling corny jokes. And, worst of all, no thanks.

I’ve learned to improvise. I don’t need a special day for thanks. You don’t need one either. For some reason, we see Thanksgiving as the only day to be thankful. What about the other 364 days?

For me, I’m thankful every single day. I’m thankful for my life, my body, and the world. I’m thankful for my friends and (little) family. I’m thankful to be in Canada where the biggest problems are tax-season and figuring out what to wear in the morning.

Most people can’t say the same. Most people don’t have what we have.

I am fortunate enough to be typing this on a computer in the quiet. I am fortunate enough to have the Internet to post this and read all your wonderful comments. You are fortunate enough to be reading this, on your computer, using your Internet.

There is so much to be thankful for everyday, that one day doesn’t seem to do justice.

The ‘Be Grateful’ List

Everyday, starting today, write down things that you are grateful for. Contemplate and dig. Search for everything. There are so many things that we take for granted.

If you start to struggle, dig deeper. It’s there. Something. There is always something. Struggling is good. When you find something to be grateful for, you will appreciate it much more.

On my particularly crappy days, writing this list helps. I feel rejuvenated. No matter how bad things may be, there is always something I can be grateful for. That’s the positive side of it all.

For me, I am grateful every morning. I wake up and my phone dings because of WordPress. I have new likes and comments and follows to reply to which makes my heart happy.

Write that list. Count your blessings.

I don’t need a turkey-carving ceremony or grandiose meals. I have everything that I love. I love everything that I have. There is no more for negativity.

I don’t need a drunken uncle. I have you. And I am grateful.

Be bold, be free, and love on.

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The Power of a Compliment

“ ___________, you look beautiful today.” Earlier this week, I said that to a co-worker. I really thought nothing of it. I thought she looked really pretty that day and decided to tell her.

At that time, it was just a thought I had. I found out yesterday, that those words made her feel amazing.

-Inner Conversation- Well Of course, Leroy! You can call anyone beautiful and they’ll absolutely melt (as long as you’re being sincere). –Inner Conversation-

I had no idea at that time, but those few simple words lit up her day, she said. She was having a terrible struggle inside (none of power-of-words-300x236which I knew about) and something as simple as you look nice today had a profound effect on her.

There is so much power in words. I feel like most people do not realize its impact. Personally, until this moment, I never really (I MEAN, REALLY) thought about the impact of words.

The impact it can have on people. The impact it can have on emotions and feelings. The impact it can have on people’s thoughts. It is incredibly powerful.

Nice things are simply not said enough. 

Compliments are usually kept to themselves. The majority of the time people only think about a compliment. It is a rare occasion when it’s actually spoken. Why though?

Maybe people think it may be misconstrued? Maybe they’re just shy? Or maybe people are afraid of being accused for hitting on someone. These all seem like terrible excuses.

For me, I realized that nice things are simply not said enough. Instead, we dish out criticisms and “constructive criticism.” There is nothing wrong with constructive criticism, but why not say something positive in lieu?

It is an upsetting realization, but negative things are said more than positive things. We spend our time gossiping, putting people down and hurting people, lying to people, instead of complimenting them.

Where has all the love gone? Or maybe it was just never there? Regardless, we need to bring it back to life.

Everyone has their own struggles.

I express my thoughts through this blog. Prior to this venue, they were held within my head, festering and compiling upon itself and eating away at me. This is my venue to vent, express, and deal with my many thoughts.

But for the people who can’t vent, their struggles are inside their own head. Everyone has their own struggles, their own problems, and their own negative emotions to deal with.

A simple kind word has a profound effect on people. It alleviates their problems (even if it is for a brief moment), boosts good mood, and dishes out a dose of positivity in, what may be, their negative life.

I learned this valuable lesson this week. From this day forth, I will focus on casting away negative words. I will pay close attention to my own gossip, criticism, and negative words.

I will intervene when someone tries to put people down and hurt people. I am going to start the activity of complimenting (at least) one person each day. Slowly that number will rise. Whether it can be misconstrued as flirting or not, I will do it for the simple opportunity of making someone feel happy.

I implore you today and everyday, to do the same. I am only one man. I can only reach so many people. There is great power in simple compliments. Instead of even risking the chance of hurting someone, help someone with your words.

“Words can inspire. And words can destroy. Choose yours well” – Robin Sharma

At the end of the day, words are free. They are able to love, accomplish, and create everything. Be the change, be the positive in someone’s life today.

Be bold, be free, and love on.DailyKindness_Flyer3OFF

Three Ways to Feel Inner Peace

I am not a Zen master. I do not see myself as having no problems. In fact, I feel like I have a ton of problems. But that’s a part of life. Life is filled with problems.

The other day, someone said to me, “Leroy, you’re always happy. You seem so at peace, so put together all the time, just so happy. How do you do it?”

That statement caught me off guard. Inside my own head, there are constant battles and struggles brewing and festering. There’s always something that I think about.

But why did that person get that notion from me? I feel far from it. But I must be putting off some sort of vibe for someone to say that. There must be some sort of energy that I am releasing that others are picking up on.

Well, even though I have a lot of inner struggles, I try to be the most positive, happy person I can be, outside. This is not a façade, or fake, or fabricated. I just don’t want to bring anyone else down.

I feel like I deal with problems effectively. I feel like I am control (sometimes). Here’s how I deal with it.

1) Realize that it’s not a big deal.

Some problems are just not as big as they are at the time it occurs. They get inflated within your own thoughts. They fester and grow until it consumes you. Little problems become big problems.

I try to think of EVERY problem as a little problem. No matter how small (or large) it may seem, approach your problem as if it were small. Heading towards a problem with that mindset automatically flicks your brain towards an optimistic view.

You feel like you can manage it, overcome it and stand on top of the mountain, victorious.

2) Distract yourself

It’s a surefire solution to get your mind of a problem. Simply do something else. Not just anything, but something you really enjoy. Something you really enjoy is when you think about nothing else, but that activity.

For me, that is working out. I find it incredibly therapeutic. For a few hours everyday, I forget everything and slip into thoughts of the blood rushing into my muscles. Thoughts of muscles contracting and relaxing fill my head as I pull and push more and more weight.

Find something that you love, and dedicate time towards it, every single day. It gives your brain a break from all the inner turmoil.

3) Everything will be fine in the end. 

Everything always seems to work itself out. I don’t really know how it works or what force moves it to work, but everything always seems to work itself out.

Problems always come and go, and no matter how big or small they are, there is always a resolve. Either you deal with it or some force in nature (call it Science, God, or the Universe) throws its’ helpful hand in the mix.

If you worry about the problem, the bigger it becomes. You keep it in the forefront of your mind. You are the only one letting the problem still rear its’ ugly head. The more you think about the problem, the larger it becomes.

Problems do not go away unless you stop thinking about it. I don’t believe in miracles, but I do believe in the universe.

The more you think about your problems, the more problems seem to surface. Think positive thoughts, put on a brave face and spread a positive message (You can even share this blog on your social media).

How do you cope with problems? Please leave a comment below. My readers and I would love to hear your input! Thank you for reading, liking, and sharing.

Be bold, be free, and love on.

inner-peace

One Simple Lesson Learned From Ducks.

Everyone has problems. That is just a part of being alive and human. Then again, even animals have problems. They have serious food chain problems. Their problems are much more life threatening.

While some of problems are life threatening, most are small. We enlarge them in our own head through our thoughts and feelings. We make them bigger than they are.

We allow them to take up a lot of mental energy and expend our time and effort by thinking about it.

Don’t Sweat the Little Things

“She said what about me. I don’t know how to do this. I can’t find a job. I can’t believe an ex is seeing a close friend. The weather is dreadful today.”

We take these little problems and let them endlessly circle our heads. They occupy so much mental energy even though they will have no bearing on your future.Problem-Solving

Next time you find yourself contemplating a problem, think about how much it would matter to you in 60 years. How much would it matter to you 50 years? 25 years? 10 years? 5 years? 1 year? 3 months?

It arranges the problem into perspective. If these problems do not affect you in the long-term, sweating about it is a gigantic waste of time.

Don’t Make Them Larger Than They Are

At the current time, any problem seems large. It seems like it’s taking over your life. You feel paralyzed with fear, anguish, and regret. In most cases problems are extrapolated in our own heads.

We make them larger than life. We want to complain about it. We keep it in our heads because we need to feel something. Most problems are small. They have no real bearing on your life.

Complaining about it gives the problem a life. It makes it larger than normal. It fuels the problem till it becomes something worth talking about. Save yourself from it.

Be Like A Duck

I watch the ducks at my work float along the water. They seem to have such inner peace and stillness in their bodies. They just sit there and let the current sweep them away.

During a confrontation between ducks, peace can be observed. After two ducks get in a fight they will separate and float off in separate directions. Then each duck will flap its wings vigorously a few times to release the surplus energy that built up during the fight.

The_Duck_by_clumsypersonAfter they flap their wings, they float on peacefully, as if nothing had ever happened. These ducks are pretty low on the food chain, yet they seem to hold no qualms with the world. Even after a fight for life, they appear to be at peace.

Your problems hinder your ability to be at peace. Constantly being stuck in a loop of problems hinders your thoughts and actions. Be like the duck. Release all your energy from the problem.

Complain no more, think about it no more and move towards a peaceful life. How do you deal with the little problems in your life? Leave a comment below. My readers and I would love to hear from you.

Be bold, be free, and love on.