Bad Attitudes Make Everyone's Life Miserable
Why the bad attitude?
We experience it on a daily basis and then we wonder why our children behave the same way! People push, shove and argue their way into something they feel they deserve more than anyone else. And the rest of us fall into the same pattern just to keep our positions in life. Sadly, the bad attitude around us does more than just create anger. It begins to eat at us and our feelings until all we can think about is how bad everything is and how we are helpless to make a change.
Let's take a look at what might be causing it.....
Today, people are in a hurry to accomplish their tasks because they have so little time. Why? Because a tight economy means that items are too expensive for the 'little guy (and girl)' to afford on their own. A car to get back and forth to work; gas for the car to get back and forth to work (sorry couldn't resist); a refrigerator to keep the food cold and fresh; food for the table; and clothes for the kids (and yourself). These things were much less expensive years ago; but now they are above the heads of many households that used to be considered middle class. This means they are now in the poverty level--even with two adults working!
Tired from a long day at work and the stress of keeping up a household means that people take their anger and frustration (and tired irritability) with them wherever they go. They bring it to the grocery store while they are trying to buy food for the house and decide what they can and can't afford. They bring it to the work place as they try not to admit their petty mistakes by putting the blame on the new guy. They bring it to the department store where they are trying to pick up a present for someone while it is on sale only to discover that the store only has three of the item and everyone is fighting for it. And they bring it home where everyone should feel safe, but don't because of all the stress.
Times are tough, but there is light.....
Times are tough right now, that is true. But let's face it, at any given time, times are tough for someone because of: job issues, a death of a loved one, money issues, debt issues, car trouble, legal trouble, neighbor problems, landlord trouble, health issues, pet problems, home repair issues, and whatever else may come. These items will affect hundred's of people daily making their lives difficult and their attitudes, well, bad.
No one is left out of the circle, which means you, me and the rest of the world are also bringing bad attitudes with us wherever we go. We are just as guilty (well maybe). Can you catch yourself shoving someone who cut in line right in front of you? Can you catch yourself trying to explain to your boss that it wasn't really your fault? Can you catch yourself shoving and pushing your way through the grocery store to try to get home faster? I'll bet you can. I know I can on occasion.
How can we change our attitude and pay it forward?
We all have bad attitudes at one time or another. When things keep going wrong, our attitudes get worse. When holidays arrive they can often get out of hand. When we need something that we can't afford, our attitudes get awful. And, SADLY, we take our attitudes out on our loved ones and those around us. This increases everyone else's bad attitude and creates a vicious circle that never ends; it just keeps getting worse.
To stop this circle and shrink it down to a workable size, we need to STOP! That's right, stop. Stop moving; stop talking; and stop thinking. Take a moment to just look around you! See what is there before your eyes. See what you couldn't see because of the attitude. See the flowers. See the trees in their fall gowns of yellow, red, and gold or their summer shirts of green and brown. See the children laughing when they play. See the cat chasing a butterfly. See the simple things that we all seem to miss as we race throughout daily lives.
Now take that happy feeling and pay it forward. One of the easiest ways to do this is to simply smile. It makes others smile because it is catching. It gives others the feeling of warmth and happiness that they have been missing. It makes people feel better inside. (And it uses more calories than a frown!) Or you can buy a coffee for a stranger, or help someone who has fallen. By helping strangers, we not only make ourselves feel better inside, but we give them a feeling of happiness that they will, usually, use by helping someone else.
I know it is hard to think of something good for someone else when things are going so bad for yourself; but doing something for someone else will make you feel good. Feeling good might help you to see things differently. Seeing things differently might help you to see what you couldn't see before, maybe a solution.
Finally, can one person make a difference?
Some people believe that one person can change the world. I believe that, do you? Can we find the light at the end of the long tunnel? YES! When you give a person a smile in some way, shape or fashion, they usually pay the smile forward. By doing so, everyone that person meets will be greeted with a warm smile; and who knows they may also pay it forward. And you might just find yourself getting many more positive responses than negative ones. Before long, the positive will far outweigh the negative and you will be happier. Fantasy? No, reality!
Now, when things begin to go wrong: smile, help someone, look around you and see what others might need. You'll be very surprised to see that you are not alone in your battle. You will also be very surprised to find that the tough times will be easier to suffer through and the good times will come faster.
One last note: positive attitudes draw positive responses and negative attitudes draw negative responses. If you are positive, those negative attitudes of today will be a thing of the past tomorrow!
OK everyone, ready, set, SMILE!
© 2011 Cheryl Simonds
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