Expansive Outlooks

One really spectacular benefit of social media is that it allows you to follow those you choose, ignore those you want to and share news or commentary on your day as you see fit. There are a great many people who use it purely for trivia or entertainment. There are many companies that use it to pimp their product. There are also a host of people who use it to regularly share good news, positive messages and (hopefully) inspirational commentary. Finding THOSE people wasn’t as easy thirty or forty years ago and, in that way, social media can benefit everyone on a daily basis. That said, the benefit only exists if YOU seek out and follow the folks who share such positive messages. Here are a few other thoughts to go along with what you might find if you do.

Creating your own reality: You can either believe that you are purely a victim of circumstance, or you can own control of your circumstances and thereby create your own reality. What do I mean by that? Well, we all know that we can’t control circumstance. What we CAN control is how we react to it; how we let it impact our day, our feelings and our outlook. If something goes wrong and we adapt to it in the best way possible, we continue forward in a positive fashion. If we let it crush us, then the circumstance has defeated us – but IT didn’t make us a victim; we allowed ourselves to be a victim. Don’t do that. Adjust… adapt… improvise… overcome. Be better than your worst circumstances and create your own reality.

Believing life happens for you: This is very similar to the statements above about creating your own reality. Many people perceive life as happening to them versus for them. What’s the difference? If life happens to you then you have little to no control over the direction it takes or what each day holds. If life happens for you then it’s there waiting for you to take control, choose your path and steer it ahead. Let life happen FOR you, not TO you.

Believing you live in abundance: A good friend of mine (and a wise man) often reminds himself that while he might feel challenged in his day, he can look around and see plenty of people who would happily trade places with him. Envy is an ugly thing and greed is even worse. There are a lot of people in the world who are truly without anything and there are a great many who have plenty but complain about what they don’t have. They FEEL poor even though they aren’t. First off, if your family is around you and everyone is healthy, then you are already rich beyond the measure many will ever attain. Second, if you have a roof over your head (of any kind), food in the pantry and serviceable clothes on your back, you’re well ahead of a good portion of the world. Third (and last for this section), no matter what you may WANT, what you have is what you’ve earned. Want more? Work more or work harder (or work smarter). But don’t ever have a negative outlook about what you have just for a lack of material items.

Obstacles are good: If all of life was an easy walk, you’d never learn to climb. If you never had to get anywhere fast, you’d never learn to run. If everything you ever needed was brought to you, you’d never travel anywhere. To some that sounds like heaven. To others (like me) it sounds like one version of hell. The truth is that obstacles help us to grow. They force us to learn new ways to do things; to overcome challenges. What many people call “failure” isn’t. It’s a set back because we didn’t know the best way to do something. We run into a challenge; we examine it; figure out a solution; overcome the challenge and move on. Because obstacles / challenges help us to grow and improve they are actually a blessing in our lives. Try to keep that outlook in mind: challenges are good – they help you grow.

Get started. No excuses. Nearly everyone I know sets a date or specifies conditions before they start a project. Sometimes that’s just good planning; other times it’s an excuse to delay starting something you’re not comfortable with yet. Challenges aren’t comfortable; they aren’t meant to be. Not knowing if your plans will work out SHOULD leave you with some anxiety… but that can be very exhilarating. Not knowing exactly how something is going to work out can be part of the attraction of trying it. The knowledge that as things progress you’ll be required to meet and overcome challenges only makes the end success all the better. The sooner you get started, the sooner you can enjoy that success.

Easy doesn’t mean good. In fact, where a growth motivating challenge is concerned, easy is worthless. Anything worth having takes hard work to achieve. When you think about it, the things that make you who you are… different and unique from everyone else… are largely the challenges you’ve overcome and the lessons you’ve learned from them. The challenges we face in life and the lessons we learn from them shape our personality and our motivational outlook. How well we deal with life’s problems is determined, in large part, by the building blocks of growing up and managing challenges throughout our youth, young adulthood and adult years. If your life has been such that you’ve never had a challenge then I submit to you that you’re not really living.

So… don’t be a victim of circumstance. Make life happen FOR you. Recognize the abundance of what you have. Overcome challenges and appreciate the growth that results. Get started. Don’t wish for easy. Develop the strength to overcome that which isn’t easy.

 

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