I want to dedicate this blog post to my dear and trusted friend, Judy Craig, and my Mom who love me enough to tell me the truth when I need it, even when it hurts and kicks my butt. Love you both!!!
I like to think of myself as being a fairly optimistic person, a little south of Pollyanna most of the time. Like the old Monty Python song says, “Always look on the bright side of life… do do… dah doot... de doot dah doot!”
Lately I have chosen to let loose the Negative Nelly in me – she’s a bit south of Darth Vader. Nelly is the little voice that lives to point out the bad side/points of everything in my life – from people to places to every little nook and cranny. You gotta give her props for creativity, because she can find the down side to anything. Some of her favorite lines usually include the words, “it’s not enough… you could do better… look at what the other person has… it's not fair...”, and similar words that are the termites to my thankfulness. She’s the daughter of that snake in a garden long ago that hissed doubt in Eve’s ear… and thus Negative Nelly was conceived. She is the voice that breathes life into discontent, dissatisfaction, disgruntlement and displeasure. Yep… she is the part of me that is the “Diva of Diss”!!!
It’s easy to allow yourself to become influenced by the circumstances of life – complex things like the economy (and how it affects you personally), the behavior/outlook of others around you... right down to the weather (she writes as yet another dreary NJ snowstorm rages outside). It’s kind of like being a non-smoker in a room full of smokers. You may come out a non-smoker, but the smoke has permeated your hair and clothes, it’s internalized in your lungs, and you carry the stench with you - until you choose to change those clothes, toss them in the laundry, and take a shower. Negativity (and what we do with it) is a lot like that, isn’t it?
It takes someone who really cares about to you have the courage to verbally hit you upside the head and call you on your “never satisfied” and “pity party thrower” sad self, and to encourage you to stop playing that same old tune and change the station! How grateful I am to have some treasured people like that in my life.
One of my favorite quotes about attitude come from Chuck Swindoll (see frame).
So today I choose to change. Today I will wipe the “diss” off my lenses, own my ‘tude, get down on my knees to ask God (and my longsuffering loved ones) to forgive me for being such a self-focused crabapple, and get on with the business of being grateful and thankful for the incredible life I have… right this second. I’d rather wear a bit more rosy lenses, tinged with realism, but nonetheless more likely to see that for which I can and should be appreciative. My blessings overflow, and it’s time my ‘tude, words, countenance and life reflected just that.
It’s like the old hymn said, “Count your blessings, name them one by one. Count your blessings, see what God has done.”
Won’t you join me today? Together let’s duct tape shut that Negative Nelly voice within, exercise our grateful muscles and work them out till we drop with thanksgiving!