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If ever you feel like the World is on your shoulders and everyone is against you, remember one thing. Maintaining a positive attitude will see you through your situations. Sarcasm, when spoken in the identical tone as praise is acknowledged as praise. Things are taken how they are spoken. Do not be afraid of challenges, but confront them with the confidence of a lion. Know that in any hardship, it could get worse before it gets better, but smiling and laughing makes the time pass by.
When March arrived, I felt a great desire to fly off to a sunny location and relax with a coconut. Months of winter had weighed heavy on me with its many days of grey skies and damp, cold temperatures. Tangled among the late winter days were some of my own life worries about money and a possible move. Oh, how that hammock between the palms called my name. It seemed that when March finally arrived, I felt like I had been climbing the last switchback out of the Grand Canyon, the toughest leg of the hike. And waiting for me at the top was the first day of spring, only I didn't know it.
Illness, even a 24-48 hour flu, changes your perspective. I ended up having deep moments of gratitude while I was sick. I was reminded, by what seemed like a bucket of water being poured over my head, how much I had to be grateful for."Wake up!", I felt the universe telling me. It's not that I forget the things that I am grateful for, it's that sometimes I forget to say it, to feel it, to just simply give thanks. When you are sick, everything stops in your life. Someone else has to take care of whatever needs to be done. One day you are walking around, fretting and busy, and the next you are lying flat on your back, powerless over all those things that seemed so important the day before. Alone with my pain, sour stomach and Gingerale, I was reminded of how good I really have it in my life, despite the obstacles that seem to pop up like detour signs on a highway. I mean, that's really what they are. Just detours to avoid a block, to help guide us on a different road to get us where we are going.
Yesterday I had the pleasure of visiting a very good friend. We ate delicious soup, had great conversation and listened to our children play and laugh. On my way home I stopped at the library. A book I had ordered weeks ago was sitting on the pick-up shelf, waiting for me. The Prosperous Heart, By Julia Cameron. It was my gift of spring. Arriving in perfect harmony and timing.
Seasons are so incredible. They flow with balance, making each year a miracle. Spring is here. Take a moment to look back on this winter of your life with gratitude. Take with you the lessons you may have learned through those months of hibernation. The ice has broken. It's time for growth again. Go out and buy those seeds, the kind you can put in the ground, or the kind that you can read by the morning light. Let go of whatever you feel you must let go of. Lift your head and turn your face toward the warmth of spring.
Although our culture invites us to dwell on negativity, there is an alternative that we can encourage in ourselves. That alternative is the prosperous heart. The prosperous heart recognizes that prosperity is a spiritual bottom line, not a fiscal one. Our faith, not our cash flow, is what brings to our lives comfort and ease.
By Patricia from Maple Falls, WA
I did part of my student teaching in a nursery school. One of the high points of the day for the children was snack time. Whether the snack was cookies, crackers, or pretzels, students got so excited, unless the item was broken. No child wanted the broken snack. Most teachers just discarded the broken snacks, except the teacher who mentored me. She saved all the broken snacks until she had enough for a Crumb Party. Instead of one item being offered, children got a little of everything. The portions were usually larger as well. The students couldn't wait for the next Crumb Party. I always admired that teacher, not just for her frugality, but for her creativity and ability to turn a negative into a positive.
I then remembered the summer I turned 6. We were living just a few months in our house, and the air conditioning broke in my sister's and my bedroom. The temperature was 102 degrees F, and it was too hot for us to get any kind of quality sleep. My parents moved our bedding onto the floor in their bedroom, which also had an air conditioner, and we had a sleepover until the heat subsided. My sister and I still remember those nights as being so much fun. My parents never let on that finances were tight, and the last thing they needed was to replace the air conditioner.
These two events made me realize that our attitude, not our circumstances, determines whether we are satisfied with what we have. The greatest gift we can give our children is contentment. Most children would rather have three like-new outfits or toys from a garage sale or thrift shop than one brand-new item. As long as food is tasty, most children will happily eat at home rather than in a restaurant.
Life can be a pity party, or a crumb party. Which one will you choose?
This is a guide about living a positive lifestyle. Maintaining a positive outlook in all your activities and interactions with family, friends and coworkers, will improve the quality of your life.