Here’s something easy you can do for children, grandchildren, parents and friends: remind them of how much they have going for themselves. Remind them of how much they are loved, how quickly they learn new things, how much fun they are to be around, how cooperative and helpful they are. Help them concentrate and focus on the plusses in their lives, because we know that is a very useful habit to have. And let’s face it, making this a practice makes you happy, too.
So, here’s a question: Have you thought about doing this, for yourself? How long has it been since you have taken a few minutes to list your accomplishments, your “assets,” those things that bring you pleasure and make you happy for yourself?
You know, happiness is a here-and-now situation, and despite the sad, frustrating and sometimes irritating news coming at us, there are always plenty of reasons to feel good, if you stop to take a deeper look. Are you proud of your family? Are you managing to pay your bills, maybe even save a little? Are you reasonably healthy, with the use of all your senses? Do you have work you enjoy, friendships you treasure, and time to do things you like to do?
Take a moment and make a list of the plusses in your life and share them with someone close to you. Write them down. Let yourself feel pride and pleasure in your accomplishments. Allow yourself to feel happy about the memories. And like the children’s song says, “If you’re happy and you know it, then your face is sure to show it!” Smile! You are alive and kicking! Enjoy yourself in the present, the only time frame you really have any control over.
When we have an honest sense of what we have going for ourselves, we also have the strength – and maybe the courage – to tackle the extra challenges we face, every day.