“But I have found that in the simple act of living with hope, and in the daily effort to have a positive impact in the world, the days I do have are made all the more meaningful and precious. And for that I am grateful.”
~~ Elizabeth Edwards
Wow…. I had no idea what a blessing this blog would be.
At the end of last year I went through a month of high tension and a lady I highly respect suggested I do a “Count My Blessings” month. I did and it was very powerful and was a real demonstration of what looking for the bright side could do for my life.
So I decided to try it for a month. And so far I have managed 295 days in a row! I can hardly believe it. Some of those postings are late at night. And once it was technically after midnight, but I hadn’t gone to bed yet (and I had woken up late that day), so I am counting it.
And the consistent promise to find at least something to be positive every day has made a remarkable difference in my life. Things that would have sent me spiraling into depression a year or so ago haven’t had that much weight on my life. Sure I get hit my bad news—like this whole bit at work with having to work Sundays—but instead of weeping and gnashing my teeth and all that drama, I look it in the face and try and figure out how to go on.
It’s been dynamic.
It’s made me have a different reaction to other people.
In some ways my sympathy for them has increased by truck loads.
It makes me aware how bad I was at one point in my life.
It makes me want to help.
It’s another reason why this blog has become such a blessing. A blessing I never expected. People stop me on the street! I was at an event recently and was stunned at how many people hugged me, even kissed me, and thanked me for this blog! Told me I inspired them and gave them hope and made them think that maybe they really did need to start looking at life in a different way. A gentleman said to me, “What day is this?” and my response was, “Wednesday?” to which they said, “No. I mean on your blog. I read it almost every day.”
I’ve gotten emails from people thanking me. From people asking me to please do my blog again next year.
A friend of mine who lives in Whales said she was talking to someone about me and her friend said, “Oh! You mean that guy who writes that 365 Days of Silver thing?”
I mean England? People in other countries have heard of my blog?
“You’re famous,” my friend joked.
I didn’t start this blog to be famous.
But if it helps others? If my pain wasn’t needless? If my search for a better path inspires others to do that same?
That’s pretty awesome.
In fact, if there are days that I am tempted to just skip it, it are those very people who give me hugs or send me emails that keep me going.
I do get frustrated by something.
I meet people who seem to thrive on finding and seeing the worst in everything. Who are frustrated or stressed by everything. People that I believe are addicted to stress. I get shocked at all that they find to be stressed about. I’ll be with them and they’ll say, “See! Now do you see why I am so stressed?”
And I don’t. Not at all. Not even a little bit.
Except that I can remember the days when I would cry on Friday because I had to go to work on Monday. How my ex tried to help me and I was so addicted to being stressed or negative that I couldn’t figure out how to get out of it.
But finally I decided I wanted to live. I didn’t want to be stressed all the time. I wanted to be happy.
So I started working on it. I started working on me. Because negativity is toxic. It was toxic to me. And it was toxic to others.
I have a friend I see once or twice a year who is constantly telling me that s/he has lost another friend. “I don’t know what I did. How have I lost another friend??”
Well, I want to say, your negativity is toxic. People can’t stand to be around it. It poisens them. Makes them feel sick. Makes them feel negative. And they might love you but they have to pull away from you.
And having friends pull away only makes the depression and stress and negativity worse.
So listen. Please.
If you were like me and everything seems dark and deep and awful, think about doing what I did.
I got up each day and found something to be happy about.
It might have only been that my knees didn’t hurt that morning. It might be onlyn that I was alive and that I had clean jeans to wear that day or that Quick Trip had a doughnut that I really liked. Something.
Play what I call the Where’s Waldo game. That one where you look at a picture who hundres of people and you have to find Waldo. At first it’s not easy. But each time you play the game it gets easier and easier to find hm.
Each day find something good. Anything.
And as the days go past, it will be easier and easier. Until finally it will be the bad things that are hard to find.
And 365 Days of Silver has been my Where’s Waldo.
I keep finding the silver lining.
And today I am thankful that every day, there is a silver lining to be found.
original photograph by bella_domanie from morgueFile.com