In a week filled with challenges from the winter weather, it’s easy to find reasons to complain. Before you open your mouth to complain about a problem, look for the blessings in your life. Norman Vincent Peale wrote the timeless classic “The Power of Positive Thinking” in 1952. Peale’s book became an international bestseller with more than seven million copies in print and audio formats.
The message of Peale’s book is as true in 2016 as it was in 1952. The power of positive thinking can change your life. Instead of focusing on what’s wrong in your life, look for what’s right. Turn your complaints into compliments, look for the beauty of nature and practice helping others instead of criticizing others.
Peale’s publisher reviewed his book with these words, “Translated into fifteen languages with more than 7 million copies sold, The Power of Positive Thinking is unparalleled in its extraordinary capacity for restoring the faltering faith of millions. In this insightful program, Dr. Peale offers the essence of his profound method for mastering the problems of everyday living. You will learn: How to eliminate that most devastating handicap—self doubt. How to free yourself from worry, stress and resentment. How to climb above problems to visualize solutions and then attain them. Simple prayerful exercises that you can do every day, through-out the day, to reinforce your new-found habit of happiness. Eliminating all the negative thoughts that prevent you from achieving happiness and success, The Power of Positive Thinking is an inspiring program that will help you create a positive change in your life.”
Whatever your beliefs, the beauty of nature is a great place to start when you’re looking for your blessings. No matter how dark the night, the sun rises again every day, offering a new day filled with possibilities. Go outside at daybreak, find a vantage point and watch the sky begin to light up with color.
Sunrise at the beach is a beautify sight, but you can’t always be at the beach. Watching the sunrise from a mountain top is also beautiful, but most people don’t get up hours before sunrise to hike to the top of a mountain. But anyone can walk out their front door and face east to watch the new day dawning.
Many people count among their blessings family, faith and good health. But it’s a little harder to be thankful for the blessing of family when you lose a parent, sibling or child. It’s a challenge to be grateful for good health while fighting cancer or dealing with diabetes, heart disease or another chronic condition. It’s easy to question your faith when you survey the chaos around the world — much of it caused by people who don’t believe in any power greater than themselves.
Bring your positive attitude with you to work. Instead of being annoyed by a difficult coworker, be grateful that you have a job and money to pay your bills. Use the power of positive thinking to paint your problems into blessings. Offer a smile and a kind word to those who challenge you and you may receive a smile in return.
Every parent of young kids has days when they feel overwhelmed. When the kids are driving you nuts, think back to the way you felt when you held your newborn child for the first time. Channel that love into your reaction when your toddler screams “NO” at you or you ‘tween rolls her eyes at you…again.
When you’re looking for blessings, try being a blessing. Helping others is one of the best ways to fight feelings of sadness and gloom. Visit an elderly person who’s shut in and can’t drive anymore. Take food to a friend who’s recovering from surgery. Offer to watch a friend’s children to give them a little break. Bring food to the hungry at your local soup kitchen or food bank.
Life is filled with challenges and that’s not going to change. But looking at life as a blessing instead of something to be endured can change your life and the lives of those you love. Give it a try today.