Welcome back to the beginning of another work week, anyone else need some motivation – I know I do! I hope all of you had a fantastic week and enjoyed the weekend as best you could have. Hopefully you were able to get outside for some fresh air and movement, or maybe even to sneak in a round of golf.
Luckily it was about 8 degrees C. here on Sunday and I was able to get in a full, comfortable round of golf. It was a little soggy requiring some clean and place action and some unfortunate fat shots, but that is just how it is in wet winter conditions. Ended up with an 83, not my best score, but pretty average. Hopefully as we move into summer, this score will creep lower and lower :-).
Unfortunately though, after that decent round of golf, I must say that I had a bit tough night that resulted in a whole bunch of negative thinking and a very, very late night. Out of necessity, this morning required more coffee than normal, and I definitely had some heavy eyelids. It was also very hard to get down to work and be productive. I had a whole lot of work to do so I really needed something to pick me up and give me some motivation.
Luckily I stumbled across this article and it really got me thinking. While positive thinking is not new to me and I am very aware of the benefits of it, the article was a little reminder, I nudge in the right direction if you will. While the article goes into the scientific evidence about how training your brain for certain tasks makes it more efficient at those tasks, which common sense would indicate is obvious, it was interesting since the article and the studies it references actually use Tetris as the mental task. While reading it, I was brought back to the days when I would play Tetris for hours (when I probably should have been outside), and when I closed my eyes for bed, the image would be burnt into my brain. So it definitely hit a cord when the article mentioned this same effect in others.
In the end what this all means is that we can likely train our brains to be more efficient at anything. Very cool stuff. So as the article says, why can’t we apply this to positive thinking? Well of course we can.
Over the past little while I had noticed myself falling into the trap of focusing on the things I want but don’t have. Although visualizing the things you want can be very fruitful (a la “The Secret” style), trouble follows when these kinds of thoughts lead to being ungrateful about your current life. I had been focusing on not living in a place that is warm year round, not having a job that motivates me to wake up for the day, etc, etc. This morning I think I just realized that I was falling into this pattern without even realizing it.
In the article I posted above, there are tips for how to implement training for positive thinking in your life. One such tip was at the end of each day, naming 3 things that you are grateful for. I love this suggestion and it is something that my wife and I implemented a while back, but somehow life took over and we stopped. So with the help of the little nudge I got today, I am going to start saying 3 things I am grateful for each night before bed. Hopefully this will allow me to focus on how good my life actually is, because I know I have it pretty good, and there are many people who would hate me for even thinking my life wasn’t great.
Promise to Myself:
I will enjoy my life as it is and be grateful for what I have each day. Thinking this way will lead to positive emotions and thoughts, and subsequently the energy and passion to begin dreaming about the future in a positive way (like being on the PGA tour…what!!) without letting it ruin the experience of the now! Because at the end of the day NOW is all we really have, and all we have any chance of controlling.
I would love to hear what motivates you?