I am something of a positivity fanatic. If you are around me and you say something like, “Well, that probably won’t work out the way I want.” I will usually say, “Don’t affirm that. As a man thinketh so he becomes.” Our words are so powerful.
Your brain doesn’t easily process negatives. That’s why parents are encouraged at the pool to tell their children to walk, instead of saying “Don’t run.” Your mind has to process and thing of what it should do.
I referenced in my first post about writing this book that I was filled with fear. That’s sort of an understatement. I was curled around a pillow crying and crying, saying I can’t do this, I don’t want to do this, I am so scared. It’s pretty out of character for me.
Typically, new things or even things that don’t go my way are just adventures. Yesterday I was getting a required pedicure for this trip (when you are speaking to people that work in plastic surgery offices, a pedicure is mandatory) and remembered the time Sami and I were driving the Honda. She was probably 15 or 16. The car is a 5 speed manual transmission and it stalled. I don’t know why we were in a deserted parking lot with a downhill slope but we were. So I didn’t even get frustrated (I won’t bust Sami out that she did freak out a little), I just pointed the car in the downhill direction, released the brake, let it get rolling, and then popped the clutch. I told Sami it was just another adventure when you choose to drive cars that are 15 years old (we bought it when Sami was 9 months old).
Writing this book so far has not been an adventure. It has not been fun for me. I have endeavored to be diligent and set aside a consistent amount of time. Then I say, Ok God what are we writing today. I write what goes through my head. I have an outline so sometimes I look at it before I ask, but it’s a frustrating process. I am a planner, I like knowing where I’m going. I like doing things I’m competent at.
During a retreat a few weeks ago I felt that I was supposed to write about the good, the bad and the ugly of not only my journey but also the process. That I couldn’t be Pollyanna about the process, I had to be authentic and real. I completely took this to the extreme. Nearly anyone that would listen would hear how this process has made me feel more insecure than I have in years.
I am a public speaker a lot. Getting up in front of a room full of strangers is not intimidating to me. Writing, oy vey.
Then today I was walking in the beautifully remodeled Detroit airport with its hallway that is domed and has relaxing lights that change colors and I realized, I wasn’t being authentic….I was being downright negative.
It’s one thing to be honest about my struggle with this level of vulnerability, but in my own head I was already beginning to dread it. I noticed it because today when I realized I had a 3 hour layover my first thought was oh cool, I can write for several hours. Uhh, why hasn’t that attitude been the primary? I was being disciplined in making myself write but not in my attitude about writing.
Guess what? No one knew but me. That’s often the case when we have a bad attitude about something. No one knows your true heart but you. The person you have to live with 24/7/365.
A cheerful attitude doesn’t cost you anything, but a bad attitude costs you a very precious commodity – energy. Negativity saps you of energy faster than anything else.
I have literally had people say, I keep up with you on FaceBook and you make me tired. Actually, the negativity that you let seep into your thoughts and lives every day is what’s making you tired.
Now that I’ve confessed, I’m going to write…with a cheerful attitude.