I have fourteen friends – count ’em – they stay by my side at all times. They are the books I read each morning as I look for inspiration to get me through the day. Today a paragraph caught my eye that caused me to back up and say “Whoa!”
“The way you talk about yourself and your life – your story – has a great deal to do with what shows up in your day-to-day experience. Your thoughts create filters through which you view your life. If you think of yourself as a victim, you filter all that happens to you through the lens of DDT (Dreaded Drama Triangle), and you find plenty of evidence to support that viewpoint. That’s why the orientation you adopt is so important: it exerts a powerful influence on your life direction.”
That quote hit me smack between my eyes and I felt a symbolic thump on my head. I realized that I often use my morning walks with my best friend as a gripe session – we feed off each other – complaining about everything from trash on the streets to how we were mistreated by a store clerk. Needless to say we finish a wonderful walk with an attitude that would repel a skunk!
Today, I’m going to experiment with something. I’m going to squelch all attempts to relate the negative and play up the good things that happened to me since we walked yesterday. I’ll let you know how it works for me, and I betcha a Royal Crown Cola, my day will be more pleasant and I’ll be easier to be around. Try it on for size and see if it impacts your day as well.
Report card: two hours have passed and I’m still sailing along swimmingly. I purposely kept steering the conversation to positive upbeat topics and it worked! Toward the end of the walk we got around to talking about how lucky we were to be able to walk.
My walking partner mentioned that phrase about how you complain about your feet until you meet a man without feet. That led to a discussion of Ray Charles who supposedly said once, given the choice, he wouldn’t go back to being “sighted.” They led me to mention Helen Keller although I couldn’t bring up the name Helen Keller so I said “You know, that woman who accomplished so much in her lifetime and was born deaf, dumb and blind.”
From Annie Oakley to Helen Keller – what a stretch
He began listing the women I might be thinking of – but he started off with Annie Oakley followed by Eudora Welty which sent me into howls of laughter. (Literature is not his bag.) We both collapsed on the curb rolling over laughing. I guess you had to be there.
The point is, the experiment worked. I’m going to see how long I can go without complaining or grumbling. Oh drat, the smoke alarm just went off and the toast is burning up. Why does this always happen to me?