Being Mindful of the Good

After a hiatus due to the holidays, I’m back with an update on my progress on my journey to happiness. The habit I’ve been most recently working on is being mindful of the good; in other words, I’ve been trying to take notice when things go right.

This was much more challenging than I thought it’d be, but not because nothing good ever happens to me. The challenge lies in my surprisingly persistent negative outlook. One morning, for instance, I was getting some work done on my laptop while my son napped, and I heard the beeping and rumbling of the garbage truck. “Great,” I bitched to myself as I glanced at the clock, “they’re going to wake the baby.”

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There are so many things wrong with this thinking. First, it’s false; my son slept right through the noise. Second, it ignores the lesson I learned from the last habit; that is, there’s no point in grousing about things that are out of your control. And third, it doesn’t acknowledge how lucky I am to live in a country where trash is picked up regularly; there are some places where garbage accumulates on the streets, smelly and unsanitary.

Where I found myself doing well during this challenge was reminding my husband to be mindful of the good. A little hypocritical, perhaps, but effective. Each time I pointed out something good to my husband (typically whenever he complained about something), it helped me to see the good things happening in my everyday life.

Being mindful of the good is definitely going to require more practice on my part, but it makes me feel better whenever I do it, so hopefully that will keep me motivated.

Next up: Appreciate simple pleasures.

Image courtesy of Red The Net

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