Attitude precedes everything you think or do. Called ‘frame of mind’ or ‘mindset’ this essential part of your life should be dealt with constantly. You are in a good mood … everything looks rosy. A foul mood? … look out world! Frustrations, anger, physical discomfort: These certainly play a major role in how you go about your day. You have known people who go through life with a perpetual scowl. They often become the butt of jokes. Why?

You must avoid falling into a ‘negative outlook morass’. It undermines physical and mental health and it certainly is not conducive to happiness much less ‘spiritual-ness’. Dwelling on the negative is self-centered, childish. “I want everything to be the way I want it.” “Life is too tough; I hate it.” Forget that everyone has problems and that developing resilience is part of the growth process. It is impossible to be a caring individual, appreciating all you encounter, if you are constantly allowing the world to ‘beat you back into your box’ with all your petty concerns. Brief moments reflecting on ‘painful’ experiences are fine. But you must quickly extricate yourself from this self-pity and embrace the positive. Never abdicate your commitment to love and happiness. Whatever happens in your life you must always return to ‘love mode’ and get on with your quest for spiritual growth.

So learn to accept your ‘baggage’. You along with every other human being have been given physical challenges and social heritage. No matter what plagues you bodily, you are still you. No matter what you have been taught or what you hold ‘sacred’ you will always have a core to your being which can choose … and change. Your phenomenal resources to love will always be with you. Do your best to overcome obsessions and rigidities. Constantly look outside yourself and care. In this way you will find yourself. And much of the negative you have been carrying will disappear. Amazing.

Your dog has just died. Hit by a passing vehicle. After your dog walker let go of the leash. On a street that is well marked “25 mph, children at play”. You just spent $360 on an operation for your precious pet. You also built her a dog ‘house’. You loved her more than life itself. Can it get any worse? Choo Choo was a rare breed worth thousands and she was pregnant! Mmm. More? The little darling was a gift from a loved one. What else? Dear little Choo Choo was to be featured on the front page of a national magazine; a reporter and photographer are arriving any moment. “Oh boy! This is really bad!” Huh? What’s that? You’re waking up? A dream? Thank God! “Where’s my little Choo Choo?” “Here girl, here girl.” “Let’s go for a walk … in the backyard.” “Just you and me.” “No more dog walkers; I promise.”

Life’s negative experiences are never quite what they seem. Do not take them too seriously. For whatever misfortunes befall you THEY WILL PASS. Learn something from them. Your emotions and feelings are wondrous means for caring intensely. Feel good about yourself when you are deeply moved. And though you may cry and feel sad, NEVER STOP CARING. Memories linger. Cherish what brings a smile. Revisit what was nice for you. In this way you can remain comfortable and secure. For your outlook on life will be a POSITIVE one. It beats the alternative!



©2007-2008 Edwin O'Shea and All or part of only one topic, including all definitions and essay, may be used without written permission. Please see full copyright notice on home page.