Tuesday, September 1, 2009

On the sunny side of the street

When I was small I remember my mother once singing a song about a man who was going to a meeting that he was anticipating with great excitement. Because of his general feelings of euphoria everything appeared wonderful, the air was fragrant with flowers and the people around him seemed like heavenly beings. When things didn't quite go as anticipated he now viewed the exact same scenery totally differently. The people now appeared demonic and everything reeked terribly. We cannot control our circumstances but we can choose our response to them. We all know people who are like a ray of sunshine wherever life might find them. But there are also others who always manage to see the dark side no matter how wonderful things might be in reality. We are all born with different predispositions. Some people are by nature more easygoing and find it easier to be happy and optimistic. Others might have to work harder to achieve feelings of happiness and satisfaction. While one cannot change his core personality, it's still important to work on acquiring a positive attitude in life. If a person is positive than he would naturally see his life as overall good and all the normal setbacks will shrink into the background. It's really our choice to see ourselves as living on the sunny side of the street despite the normal challenges and vicissitudes of life. Especially if it's difficult than it's all the more reason to work harder at it because the payoff for ourselves and our children and our quality (and possible quantity) of life is enormous. I remember reading some of my old journal entries from a few years back and I was thinking to myself that wow, we certainly seemed to be having a wonderful time. Does it mean there were no difficult days, that the children didn't tantrum, that the laundry didn't pile up to the sky, that various appliances and furniture didn't break suddenly? Of course not, but all these things were eventually overshadowed by the good times. Sunny side living has definite advantages.


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