Work and Life Can Be Hard. Why Make Them Harder?
Take a moment right now to think of something that’s stressing you out. Maybe it’s a project or person at work. Maybe it’s something related to your family, finances, or health. Narrow it down to one thing that you wish you could change.
Now imagine that tomorrow morning, when you wake up, this thing that’s frustrating you is the first thought that enters your mind. You dwell on it as you get ready for work, as you drive to your job, and as you go through your day. Every spare minute, this negative thought is right there, at the front of your mind. You focus on it as you drive home and as you go to bed that night.
What kind of day would that be? It sounds like a hard day to me!
Now take a moment to think of something that you’re grateful for in your work or life. Maybe it’s a project at work that you enjoy or that person who is fun to be around. Maybe it’s something related to your family, home, or friends. Again, pick just one thing that makes you feel good.
Now imagine that when you wake up tomorrow, this positive thing is right there, at the forefront of your thoughts. And you continue to think about it as you head to work, as you interact with your coworkers, and as you prepare dinner that night. All day you’re thinking about how much you appreciate this person, thing, situation, etc. in your life.
How would this day be different from the other one? How might it affect how you feel, what you say, and even what you get done? But most importantly, which day do you want more of in your life?
If you’ve been to one of my talks, you may have participated in this “thought-experiment.” If you take the time to feel the difference between these two days, you get a sense of just how powerful our thoughts can be. Yet, how often do we think about what we think about?
Use this “thought-experiment” to motivate yourself to practice pausing and noticing. Because then we gain the power to choose what we focus on.
If you would like more ideas and tools to help you pause, notice, and choose your thoughts, get free access to the videos from my online course, Keep Your Positive Edge: How to Build Your Immunity to People’s Negativity for two weeks.