Sometimes, we find ourselves in less-than-ideal situations. When we can’t change the situation, there is still something we can do to improve it. If you can change your attitude, you can change your life.
Being in a bad situation doesn’t mean that we can’t be happy.
Whether it’s a long-term or short-term inconvenience, that’s all it is, an inconvenience. There’s a trap we often fall into. I’m definitely guilty of this one and am working hard to beat it. It’s the “if-then” trap, also known as the “when-then” trap. I’m sure you’ve fallen into this one. Everyone has at least a few times.
Let me explain. “If-Then” applies to those situations where something you perceive as negative has happened. As a result, your mood changed. And now you’re stuck thinking “If Cheryl hadn’t been so rude, then I wouldn’t be so pissed off right now.” Sometimes, it can go a little deeper. “If I’d had a better childhood, then I could be happy” Well guess what, buttercup? You are dead wrong. There is nothing you can do to change other people’s behavior and there is certainly nothing you can do to change the past. If you let your mood, attitude, or happiness depend on things that are out of your control, you’re gonna have a bad time. Your happiness should never rely on someone else or a past event. Your happiness is never out of your control!
This one is fairly similar. Nothing has actually happened yet, but your happiness is dependent on a future event. For example, “When I lose weight, then I will love myself” Or something like, “When you apologize, then I will forgive you.” In most cases, you cannot control how the future plays out, so the event you are waiting for might not happen. Even if it did happen, do you seriously want to wait until it does to be happy? Your happiness should never be conditional on something happening in the future.
Changing Your Attitude
If you don’t like the situation you’re in, change it! If the situation can’t be changed, embrace it as if you had chosen it. Change your attitude.
Of course, as most things are, this is easier said than done. So here is an actionable plan to take control of your happiness:
- Get rid of the negativity
Make a list of all of the negative things in your life. It could be relationships, a job, the color of your walls, etc. Once you have this list, work on eliminating those things. Stay away from toxic people, look into changing jobs, paint your wall, and keep making these changes until the list is completed.
- Don’t dwell in the past
What has already happened cannot be changed. If you are having trouble letting go, write everything you’re feeling on a piece of paper. Get all of those feelings out of your system. Then destroy that piece of paper. As you destroy it let all of the hate, anger, sadness, etc. go with it.
- Don’t worry about the future
You can’t predict the future and you certainly can’t control it. While you’re busy worrying about what could happen or wishing something would happen, you are missing out on what is happening right now. Embrace the present moment. Live and love fully and let the future work itself out.
- Focus on the positive
No matter what’s going on, there will always be a silver lining. Look for it, appreciate it, and just keep focusing on the positive. Your life will be wholly determined by how you choose to see things. So, go ahead. Change your attitude, and change your life.
What are some things you can choose to focus on this week?