Thinking Happy Thoughts

I’ve been working consciously lately to cultivate an attitude of gratitude. I’ll be honest: as a natural-born cynic, this does not come easy for me. But after seeing how many people go through life either crabby or blowing sunshine, I’ve come to understand that being happy is a choice.

We live in a hyper-critical society. Being happy is not the norm. It’s no wonder so many people focus on their shortcomings rather than their successes. I am encouraging my clients to reframe the way they view their fitness progress by making positive statements. Rather than thinking “my stomach is still flabby even after six weeks of hard work”, it is much more rewarding to consider “I can do twice as many crunches in one minute as I could just six weeks ago!” Celebrating strengths rather than dwelling on weaknesses generates a spirit of positivism that affects not only the person with whom it originates but everyone with whom that person comes in contact. Powerful!

I am giving myself a real challenge and have decided that being grateful (happy’s older, more sophisticated and wise sister) is an important part of my overall wellness. Recognizing the sources of my happiness and acknowledging it/them for the goodness they bring to my life improves my overall wellness. With this attitude of gratitude, I feel unstoppable. And the more goodness I acknowledge, the more goodness I see. Again, powerful!

I challenge you to think–right now–about five people for whom you are grateful. Write down their names. And in the next 24 hours, call, email, text, or Facebook those people and let them know how important they are to you. In doing so you will not only make their day, but you’ll be cultivating a generous sense well-being for yourself. I dare you to tell me it does not lighten your heart and change your outlook on life.

Good health and great happiness to you.

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