Can You Do This For Just One Day? A Challenge...
Stuck in a Mental Rut
Admit it - we all have a routine of sorts - not only a physical routine where we get up, get dressed and go to work, but a mental routine whereby we think and feel pretty much the same about people and things from day to day. And thats not all bad - its good to have a "code" to live by, as long as its moral and productive. But even without realizing it, our mental routine can also be negative and counter-productive to a happy and fulfilled life. So, for one day, I'm putting forth a challenge to everyone who reads this hub - to change your mental routine and think "outside the box", even if its just for one day....
When you get up tomorrow morning, you faced the day with a simple smile instead of a growl - REGARDLESS of the type of night you had?? Could you look out the window, watch the sun come up and thank God for another day? Could you shut out all the hurried voices in your head and take a minute to listen to a bird chirp or watch a squirrel scamper in the trees? Could you look around you and take time to really think about how blessed you are - that you have a comfortable home, a loving family, good food to eat and nice things around you? Could you turn on the radio to some relaxing jazz music instead of turning the TV on to hear the "gloom and doom" of the morning newscast? Could you thank God as you turn on the shower, for clean water, soap and a warm towel to dry off with? Could you sing something uplifting in the shower instead of thinking about how bad your day is going to be? And, as the kids are running around you in circles, crying for breakfast or asking you a million questions, could you just gaze into their little eyes and think about how blessed you are to have them? Could you let the irritations melt away and just be amazed at this little creation God has given you?
As you leave for work, or school or wherever you go in the mornings, instead of hurridley running out the door, could you slowly step out the door, take a deep, refreshing breath and be thankful that you CAN breathe and have clean air to breathe? Could you wave a friendly hello to your neighbor or the trash collector and silently say a prayer that they might have a good day? Could you think about taking a different way to work - maybe go the long way and take in the beauty of the changing season? Could you refocus your mind on the wonders of nature instead of wondering how you're going to make it through what you KNOW will be a horrible day? Could you look UP to the sky and think about how BIG the world is and how BIG our God is, and how tiny our problems are in comparison?
Could you for once just say a kind word to the young boy or girl at the drive thru where you stop for your breakfast, and think about how hard their life may be? And as you're stopped at the traffic light, do you think you could just smile for no reason at the person in the car beside you and make them wonder what you're so happy about?
When you get to work, do you think you could walk in with an attitude that no matter WHAT happens today, you're just going to let it slide, like water off a duck's back? Could you just think about the fact that you are MORE than just what you do, and that when the day is over, what matters is how much a difference you made in someone else's life? Could you think about how difficult your co-worker is having it right now, and how just a friendly hello or a warm smile could maybe lighten their day? Could you overlook your grouchy boss or teacher and silently say a prayer that God would bless them today and soften their rough edges a little? Could you slow down your pace a notch and take time to speak a kind word to the janitor, the delivery person or the co-worker that you dislike so much? And do you think you could smile before you answer the phone and extend that smile to the person on the other end? Could you really think about how you can help that person who is calling with irritating questions or blowing you out for something someone else in your office done to them? Could you just take a second to hold back on retaliating and surprise them with a calm and caring attitude? And when its time for your break, could you step outside for just a minute and think about how beautiful the day is, watch the sun dance off the tall buildings or even watch the rain gently cleanse all the dirt from the sidewalk? Could you even be appreciative for cold, rainy days by thinking about how blessed you are to have a raincoat, an umbrella and a warm home to come back to? Could you maybe even think about stopping by a local restaurant after work and picking up a container of take out soup and taking it to a nearby elderly neighbor or sick loved one? Could you just once go out of your way to do a little something extra for someone else?
When you come home in the evening, could you greet the dog with the same enthusiasm he has saved up all day for you? Could you sit down and read a couple of verses from the Bible before you start tearing into all the junk mail and monthly bills? Could you think about changing clothes, grabbing the dog's leash and taking him for a relaxing walk around the block instead of fixing a stiff drink and lounging in the recliner til bedtime? And could you maybe help your spouse fix dinner and playfully dance around the kitchen while the noodles are boiling? Could you for once talk about the good things about your day instead of all the bad?
And could you let the kids climb in your lap and tell you all about their day instead of brushing them off til you watch the news or make that phone call? Could you tell your spouse something nice about someone instead of how mad so-and-so made you? Could you think about how blessed you are to come home to your spouse and/or kids, while someone lost a loved one that day and will be coming home to an empty house? Could you think about how many people's lives you touched in a positive way, instead of how many people rubbed you the wrong way?
And when you go to bed tonite, could you think about how well you met this challenge today? Could you think about what you could have/would have done differently if you had just put forth a little more effort? Can you think about how it really wasn't all that difficult to be nice, say nice things or go out of your way to do something extra special for someone else? And can you think about how much better you feel about yourself because you took this challenge and rose above your normal mental routine? And finally, could you think about doing it again tomorrow??........
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