A professional acquaintance of mine always (seriously, *always*) seems to be in a terrific mood– upbeat, friendly, encouraging, supportive. I asked him once if he woke up in a good mood every day, and he replied, “nope, but I choose to have a great day every day!”
An increasing amount of research is demonstrating the benefits of positive thinking. If we stop and think about it, most situations can be viewed from several different angles– some more positive than others.
Consider the following scenario–
My family decides to spend the first day of vacation at a water park. We plan all other activities based on that decision. It rains heavily on the first day of our vacation, so we’re not able to go to the water park. Obviously, it’s disapppointing because we were all looking forward to it. However, having the “free” day allows us to explore a museum we otherwise wouldn’t have seen. It also gives us more time to just hang out as a family and play board games and watch a movie.
In the above scenario, we could have spent the day feeling upset and disappointed about our plans being ruined because of the weather. Instead, our choice was to approach things positively and find another activity we’d all enjoy together. Maybe a museum isn’t quite as much fun as the log flume at the water park, but it’s interesting and something we could still do together as a family. The difference was in *choosing* how to view the situation and making the best of it.
We’re all faced with those choices every day.
Your child brings home a bad grade. Do they get punishment, or is it an opportunity to teach better study habits? A friend cancels your lunchdate for the 3rd time in a row. Do you decide to dump the friendship, or is it a chance to spontaneously invite a new friend to lunch? The coffee shop mixes up your drink with someone else’s. Do you tell anyone who will listen they’ve got the worst service ever, or decide that maybe the mocha chip no foam soy whatever you mistakenly received is a nice (temporary!) change of pace. You stub your toe on the way into the shower only to discover there’s no hot water. Then you get to your office at 7:55 to find out your boss has scheduled a HUGE meeting for 8am. Yeah, some days you just hang on for the ride by your fingertips. Most days we have some choice in how we react to what life throws at us.
What’s your choice today???
If you’re curious about how music therapy fits into the picture, contact me anytime. I’m always happy to answer questions!