Have you ever wondered where the expression, “knock on wood" comes from? There are several theories dating back to the Pagans, Christians and ancient Celtics. The most common is that knocking on a tree woke the good spirits who would protect people from evil. Today’s version includes knocking on any wood-like surface, but the premise remains the same—preventing bad luck. To me, it’s a form of negative thinking—focusing on the bad (that terrible thing that could happen) instead of the good.
You bring into your life that which you focus upon. If you’re one of those women who thrives on gloom and doom, yanking others into your web of despair, and then gloating about your foresight when life becomes as miserable as you feared—guess what? That behavior creates your own self-fulfilling prophecy! You will always live in victim mode, shunning happiness while you anticipate your next inevitable misfortune.
Amid these forces of negativity, notice that there are other Goddesses who always seem cheerful, and are able to find the good in any situation or person. The words, “Murphy’s Law, " never touch their lips! You may think that they have all the good luck. And they do! Because they focus on how great things are or can be, versus what can ruin it. And, if something does go wrong, they find the lesson in the experience—maybe even the silver lining—and move on positively. These are the people who choose optimism and think positively.
When I woke up one day to find my car tire flat in my driveway, I didn’t think, “These things always happen to me. " Instead I chose to think, “Wasn’t I lucky to have this happen here, instead of while I was driving 60MPH on the freeway?" OK…you say, “Big deal! It’s just a flat tire. What about the really bad stuff that happens to us?"
Martha Washington said, “The greater part of our happiness or misery depends on our dispositions and not on our circumstances. " Katie Couric (the very cutest girl next door with the ear to ear smile on her face on network TV news) lost her husband and the father of her two children to colon cancer in 1998. While she admits to going through a very angry period, she’s an optimist by nature. After her loss, she decided to help educate the public about colon cancer—first by having her own colonoscopy in front of millions of people on live TV, and then by continuing her commitment as a spokesperson for the disease. Colonoscopy test rates have increased by twenty percent since then. In a Reader’s Digest interview, when asked whether she feels that she’s had more than her share of hardship, she replies, “No. There are plenty of people who have had more sadness in their lives than I have. " Katie made a conscious choice to turn a personal tragedy into something positive for herself and others.
While Katie Couric may have just been born optimistic, a positive attitude can be learned at any age. If no one in your life was a role model on how to be positive, then it becomes your duty to learn. You create the reality around you with your thoughts, words and actions. It’s the law of the universe—what you put out, you get back. Simple. Negativity zaps so much energy from you and ends up coming back ten times stronger. It’s cold, dark and heavy on your soul. Being cheerful and optimistic, however, feels like a cool summer breeze—light, sweet and airy. Try it sometime; you may never go back.
5 Ways to Think Positively:
Excerpted from the book: The Goddess of Happiness, A Down-to-Earth Guide for Heavenly Balance and Bliss
Debbie Gisonni, aka The Goddess of Happiness™, is an author (The Goddess of Happiness: A Down-to-Earth Guide for Heavenly Balance and Bliss and Vita’s Will: Real Life Lessons about Life Death & Moving On), speaker, happiness expert and columnist for iVillage.com. Contact: http://www.goddessofhappiness.com
Copyright, All Rights Reserved, Debbie Gisonni