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Look For The Good (and you will find it!)

White Hydrangea
“Optimism is a happiness magnet. If you stay positive, good things and good people will be drawn to you.” – Mary Lou Retton

What do you see when you look in the mirror?  What do you see when you look at others?  Do you see the good?  Do you jump to criticize, to judge or to compare?  Ask yourself why you’re doing this.  Then, ask yourself why you aren’t looking for the good?  The good is there, inside each one of us, and there is more than enough room for all of us to shine!

I think a lot of people are afraid to show their authentic selves to the world.  They’d rather stay small or even anonymous as they go about their daily routine.  It’s not easy to allow yourself to be fully human and vulnerable.  But, I can promise you that when you do choose to live authentically, you will be opening yourself up to a world of joy, laughter, friendship, meaningful connection and so much happiness!

Here’s a few tips to help you see the good:

1. Look around you!  Right now.  What do you see?  Is there anything beautiful near where you are sitting, standing or walking?  Perhaps there’s a vase with flowers on your desk or there’s a window with a breathtaking view of your city or town.  If you have a few minutes, take a walk outside.  Pay attention to what you see.  Do you notice the leaves falling?  Can you see the beauty in the changing of the seasons?  Can you remember when you were a child and felt truly inspired at the sight of something so beautiful or so new that you barely had words to describe the feeling of awe?  Children are excellent observers of life because they are naturally curious, open minded and heart-centered.  Children are able to live in the moment better than any adult I’ve ever known.  If you have difficulty finding beauty, ask a child to be your guide.

2.  Think of someone you love.  Perhaps the first image that comes to mind is of your child or your partner or spouse.  Think of their faces, their smiles, their laughter.  Despite my love of my iPhone’s camera feature and stored photos, I still like to carry around a small photo album with pictures of my family.  The photo album I use is made by Kolo–it’s thin and fits easily in a purse.  Whenever I’m feeling frustrated, upset, angry, disappointed or sad, my mood is instantly lifted by taking a minute to look at the people I care most about.  Seeing their faces gives me an immediate happiness boost!

3.  Write it down.  I’ve written often in this blog about my daily gratitude practice and how much joy I’ve experienced by keeping a gratitude journal.  It’s simple–grab a notebook and write down 5 things/reasons/people you are grateful for each night before you go to sleep.  Writing in my gratitude journal is one of my favorite routines in my day.  It helps me focus on the positive and serves as a reminder of all that I have to be thankful for.

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