- Are you a glass half-full person or a glass half-empty?
- Are you an optimist or a pessimist?
- Do you have a positive outlook or a negative outlook?
Have you ever just had one of those days, or weeks or even months when nothing has seemed to go right? This can change our frame of mind, our thinking, perhaps making us angry or frustrated and irritable.
We start to change the way we behave because of this, and our change of behaviour is often felt or seen by others. With a typical positive outlook when everything is going great we might be the type of person who is smiley to others, thanks others for helping us, says thank you more than we need, helps others, commend others for a great service or the work they have done and goes out of our way to notice those in trouble.
With a typical negative outlook everything changes, even our driving. We keep our eyes forward and pretend not to notice a driver wanting to come out of a turning, we are awkward when we are expected to ‘zip’, we grumble at shop assistants or complain the coffee is not hot enough. In other words, nothing is good enough for us just because we are not in ‘that’ great frame of mind! But, it wasn’t their fault we are feeling grumpy or bad-tempered, and yet we seem to want to blame everyone for everything!
How might we think differently when we aren’t feeling so great? Here’s a couple of exercises you might want to try.
- After that ‘bad day’, carry out a reflection or meditation exercise where you replay the whole day in your mind seeing how everything has panned out; you can see how you behaved and how others reacted and how your day ended up, which was not great.
- Now imagine the day starting on a different note, with everything that happened turning out great, in other words replay the ‘perfect day’ with a ‘perfect outcome’.
- Repeat the exercise for your great day tomorrow imagining everything will be just fine.