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It’s Contagious

Attitudes are contagious. Make yours worth catching. – Unknown

I had never really thought about attitudes as being contagious.  Even when I was presented with proof time and again, I never got the hint.  When my children were very young, and I woke up in a bad mood, chances are, they’d be in a bad mood too.  I just figured it was a thing.  I never thought they were taking their cues from me.  But the were.

I finally figured it out when I started teaching.  I’m human, I have moods, good ones, bad ones and indifferent ones.  I work very hard to keep my bad moods away from my students, and I’m usually pretty successful.  I’ve actually become quite good at figuring out what has put me in a mood, and flipping it to be more positive.  A couple of years ago, I had a student in my first period class that was always in a bad mood.  No matter what was going on and what was happening, their mood was horrible, and it started to impact me.  My moods would get worse, and it would color my whole day.  I didn’t realize it at the time, but his attitude was contagious.

I started figuring it out when the student stopped coming to school (sadly that happens a lot), and when they stopped coming, the mood in the room changed, the contagion was gone.  And my good attitude spread to the remaining kids. That was a lesson too.  Attitudes are contagious, but its easier for a bad attitude to spread than it is for a good attitude.  That’s kind of sad.

I was actually very happy when that student started coming back to school because I doubled my efforts to be positive around them, and upbeat and I continued to try and figure out why they were always in such a bad mood.  That student graduated, but the lesson’s I learned have stayed with me.  Attitudes are contagious, and that is something I’m never going to forget.  Bad attitudes are more contagious.  I’m not sure why but it just means I need to double up on the positive vibes when I’m faced with a negative attitude coming at me.

Attitudes are contagious, so when you have a good one, spread it to the world.

A Little Extra

The difference between ordinary and extraordinary is that little extra. – Unknown

I filled you in a couple of weeks ago about what was going on in my life.  In the past 3 months, I have had a chest x-ray, two ultrasounds, 2 cat scans, a biopsy, a pet scan and so much blood work that I’m surprised I have any blood left.  During all this time, when I should have been extraordinary, I have been so ordinary that it isn’t even funny.  There are so many things I could be doing to improve my health, but I haven’t been doing them. What I have been doing is wallowing, and that ‘s not good.

I think a lot of us give our all to whatever it is we’re doing, be it working or playing, but we have to go beyond the ordinary to the extraordinary, and that means giving more than what we normally give.  I have not been doing that, but I’m going to.  The thing is, you’re not going to change anything unless you give that little extra.  You do have to change things, but you don’t have to change everything.  Start small.  Start with one change.

That’s what I’m doing, for several reasons.  I want to be in control of my life, and above all, I don’t want to be ordinary.  Anybody can be ordinary.  I’m making the decision to be extraordinary, and you should to.  Make the decision to give a little extra to what you’re doing and move from the ordinary to the extraordinary.


Past Mistakes

Free yourself from your past mistakes, by forgiving yourself for what you have done or went through. Every day is another chance to start over. – Unknown

I tend to let my past mistakes consume me at times.  See, I’m not very good at forgiving myself, and I’m very, very good at beating myself up.  It’s not really a skill I want to have, nor is it a skill I want anybody else to have.  The only thing worse than obsessing over past mistakes is negative self talk.

I don’t know why other people do it to themselves, and I don’t know why I do it to myself.  I don’t know why I get hung up over past mistakes when I know, just like you know, that tomorrow is a new chance to start again.  I think we’re all really good at forgiving other people for mistakes they may have made.  Do you hold on to the fact that your three year old spilled her milk at dinner?  No, you clean it up, you let her know that it’s okay, it’s just an accident, you get a new glass of milk and you move on.

Don’t you deserve the same kind of forgiveness? You do, and so do I.  Work hard to forgive yourself and let go of past mistakes. You get to start again with every new day.


Free Yourself

Free yourself from your past mistakes, by forgiving yourself for what you have done or went through. Every day is another chance to start over. – Unknown

There is nothing more painful to deal with than our own self-imposed guilt.  I like knowing that you can free yourself from the guilt if you choose to do so.  That’s the thing, thought.  A lot of people choose to hang on to guilt and beat themselves up over past mistakes, myself included.

I don’t know why people do that, again myself included.  If someone you loved, or someone you worked with made a mistake, would you hold it against them for years and years and continually heap abuse on them for making that mistake?  Probably not, yet if you’re like me, you have no problem doing it to yourself over and over again, and it’s just not healthy.  I can be driving down the road minding my own business when something that happened years ago will pop into my head and I’ll start beating myself up for it all over again.  I need to forgive myself and free myself for my past mistakes just like you need to free yourself.

The great thing about life, as the quote says, is that each day is a chance to start all over again.  Leave the past where it belongs, in the past, and leave the guild where it belongs, and that’s in the proverbial trash.  Let go of the guild, let go of the anger and start forgiving and free yourself.

Take Out the Trash

You can’t litter negativity everywhere and then wonder why you’ve got a trashy life. – Unknown

It’s time to take out the trash in your life. I’m not talking about the literal trash, though it’s a good idea to take that out regularly. I’m talking about the negativity that you all to fill up your life.  I don’t care how positive a person you are, you still have negativity in your life.  It may not come from you, but it’s there, nonetheless.

Do you watch the news?  Well the news just bombards you with negativity.  Do you read the paper?  Same.  Do you scroll through Facebook?  Well I think that Facebook is, without a doubt, a bastion of negativity. Do you work?  I don’t think there is anything you can say that would convince anybody that your workplace is free of negativity!  I’m not even going to discuss the negativity that is in our news, and I think we all have that one person at work that sucks all the positivity from the air, but what about Facebook?  There are cute kitten videos and pictures of dinner and positive groups with positive quotes, and people arguing about politics and creatively recounting the pefectness of their lives or significant others.  Things like that are damaging to us.  The fill our lives with negativity, either of their making or of our own when we feel as if our lives don’t quite measure up to theirs.

Now you can’t not watch the news – we owe it to ourselves and the world around us to be informed of local and world events. We can’t not work, because life costs money, and Facebook, well it’s not a necessity, but where else are you going to play Candy Crush, right? Seriously, I can’t and won’t ever tell somebody they should give up Facebook.  You’re an adult, you get to make your own decisions.

What you do need to do, is gather up that negativity on a regular basis and take out the trash.  Don’t let it litter your life.  Imagine all the negativity in a big pile and see yourself sweeping it out the door.  Maybe it’s a big giant pile and you have your own personal bucket loader come in and grab all that negativity and bury it in a big hole.  The how you do it is up to you, but the why is the same for all of us.  We deserve better.  You don’t need negativity littering your life.  It’s time to take out the trash!

It’s Not a Magic Pill

Staying positive does not mean that things will turn out okay. Rather it is knowing that you will be okay no matter how things turn out. – Unknown

Let’s talk about thinking positive, what it is, and what it isn’t.  It’s not a magic pill.  Maintaining a positive attitude doesn’t fix everything, and it doesn’t make everything all better.  What it is, is something to hold on to when things are tough.

it's not a magic pillI’ve had people (many people actually) tell me that my having a positive attitude means I’m not dealing with the crap that life hands out.  Well here’s the thing, when life gives me crap, I deal with it.  I must, because I’m still here, moving forward ever day.  Second, thinking positive is precisely how I deal with that crap, because I always find something good in all that bad.  I got moved to a new classroom at school. It’s my 8th classroom in 9 years, and this year, I’m on the fourth floor with all the foreign language people. Now they’re very nice people, but they’re not my people.  And the fourth floor is hot, and with the weather we’ve had, it’s been pretty miserable.  And somebody stole a bunch of my stuff while I was moving. There is some crap…granted it’s not huge crap, but it’s still crap.  But guess what, my room is very spacious, and being on the fourth floor means nobody (administration) comes looking for me all that often because nobody wants to go up four flights of stairs or use the ancient elevator.  And as far as my missing stolen stuff – well, I had too much stuff anyhow, and the stuff I absolutely needed to have, I replaced.

That’s what thinking positive does for you.  It’s not a magic pill, but it’s a way to look at things, and it’s a way to remind yourself that no matter what, things will be okay.  Don’t get caught up focusing on all your own crap.  Face it head on, look for the positives, and remind yourself that you’re goign to get through it and it’s going to be okay.

Forgive Yourself

Free yourself from your past mistakes, by forgiving yourself for what you have done or went through. Every day is another chance to start over. – Unknown

You’re human. You make mistakes, and when you do, you need to remember to forgive yourself. If you don’t forgive yourself, you hold on to baggage forgive yourselfthat isn’t doing you any good.  Baggage weighs you down and holds you back, and really, who needs that?

The thing is, mistakes can be good.  When you are trying to figure something out and you make a mistake, you just learned a way not to do whatever it is you were trying to figure out.  That’s good. Mistakes mean you’re trying something new and opening yourself up to new worlds and new experiences.  That is also good.  But when you hold on to those mistakes, or worse stop trying because you’re afraid, that’s bad.  Forgive yourself. Try new things, make mistakes and let them go.

It’s easy to say to forgive yourself, but it’s one of the hardest things to do.  In fact, it’s easier to forgive other people than it is to forgive ourselves. But you deserve your forgiveness more than anything else.  Don’t hold on to the mistakes of the past. Keep the lessons, but let go of the pain. Forgive yourself.

State of Gratitude

The more you are in a state of gratitude, the more you will attract things to be grateful for. – Unknown*

I talk a lot about gratitude.  I think it’s super important, and I think everyone should try to be in a state of gratitude.  But how do you do it.  The simple answer is by being grateful for what you have. That’s all well and good, but sometimes (most of the time) that is easier said than done.  I don’t want anybody to think that I have mastered all the things I talk about here at Think Positive 30.  Quite the contrary.  In fact, I actively suck at most of them, which is why I blog about them.  It’s to remind myself that these are things I need to incorporate into my life on a regular basis.

state of gratitudeI seriously struggle with being positive, and finding the good in things. As I’ve shared before, that’s how this website was born.  It was a move of sheer desperation to get myself out of a negative thinking funk.  I now start each day with a positive quote.  Do I stay positive all day?  No, but I at least start out the day thinking positive. I’m also pretty bad at being grateful for what I have.  I spend way too much time focusing on what I want to have, and what I don’t have.  I really need to be more grateful and to get into a state of grace.

One thing I’ve decided to try is to go back to a good old hand written journal.  It’s going to be a veritable dumping ground for everything that’s in my head.  But I’m also going to try and record things I’m grateful for.  They don’t have to be big things.  Little things count too.  Like I just scored 4 awesome tops from  They were cute, and more importantly, they were on sale – and I had a coupon for free delivery! I could focus on the fact that they’re not in the size I want to be, but instead, I’m wearing one of the shirts and I’m grateful because I got a deal and it’s a cute top.

As the quote says, the more you are grateful or in a state of gratitude, the more you’ll attract good things into your life.  And from there, you be more grateful and in a deeper state of gratitude, and you’ll attract more things.  Instead of that vicious circle we can get trapped in, it’s an awesome circle.


*Often attributed to Walt Disney, but research has shown he did not say it.

You Are Enough

I am enough. Who I am is enough. What I do is enough, and what I have is enough.- Unknown

It’s funny, because today, I’m feeling like I’m anything but enough.  To be perfectly honest, I’m feeling like an complete and total screw up who can’t do a single thing right.  That is not a good way to feel. In fact, my initial thought when I read the quote this morning was maybe you are enough, but I absolutely am not.

The thing is, I don’t like feeling this way, but I know people who do.  They make a life out of being a victim and having a poor me mentality.  I’m not that person, and I hope you’re not either.  It’s okay to have a bad day, and it’s okay to feel badly about yourself, but it’s not okay to live your life that way.

you are enoughSo what do you do when you’re feeling this way?  I normally have a list of things I do to get me out of the doldrums, but today I’m coming up short.  But I’m going to power through the day.  There really isn’t any other option.  Well there is, but I’m not a wallow type of person.  I’m going to listen to some feel good music, and re-read some books that cheer me up.  I had just started re-reading The Hunger Games, but I don’t quite think that’s a feel good book, lol.

I’m also going to work on a new project I saw on facebook.  It’s kind of a craft, but not a super crafty craft which is good because I am not a crafty person. It’s similar to a vision board, but it’s a manifestation box, or creation box.  Like a vision board, you put pictures of things you want to attract into your life in the box.  But what really is making it feel good to me is the fact that you say “Whatever is contained in this box – IS!”  I don’t know why, but that sentence just feels really powerful to me, and today, I need to feel powerful.  If you want to read more about it, you can check out a great article here.

So while I’m not feeling like I’m enough today, I know that deep down inside, I really am.  I am enough, and you are enough.  If somebody thinks differently, then it’s on them, and not you.  Remember that.  You are enough!

Three Rules for Life

Three life rules: 1. If you don’t go after what you want, you’ll never have it. 2. If you don’t ask, the answer will always be no. 3. If you don’t step forward, you will always be in the same place.- Unknown

I’m not a big one for rules, especially life rules.Rules and be confining, and my usual thought process is, it’s your life, live it the way you want.  But these three rules for life make total sense to me.  They’re short, sweet to the point, and more important, they really do make perfect sense.

If you want something, you have to go after it.  Nobody is just going to hand it to you.  I wish that were the case, but it’s not.  So if you want money, work, if you want to publish a book, then start writing.  If you want to design buildings then go to school and learn how to be an architect. If you want it, go for it.three rules for life

If you don’t ask, the answer is always going to be no.  Yeah, sometimes if you do ask, the answer will still be no, but you never know unless you ask.  Don’t waste time wondering if you should or shouldn’t ask.  Just don’t.  If you have a question or want something ask.  Don’t assume that the answer is always going to be no, either.  If you can present a valid argument as to why the answer should be yes, you may be able to change minds.  And sometimes the answer is just going to be yes.  You just have to ask and find out.

Ah…stagnation.  We just talked about that the other day.  If you want change to happen, you have to do something different.  If you’re just sitting in a holding pattern doing the same thing you’ve always done, the same way you’ve always done it, you’re going to have the same results.  It’s just the way it is.  If you want change in your life, you have to make it happen.  Take one step. Do one thing different.  It doesn’t have to be a big thing, even a small thing will work.  But do that one thing different and see what happens.  Then change something else, and then something else.  You have to take that first step.

So there you go, three rules for life.  They’re honestly not too hard, and they’re not very restrictive.  Follow them and see what happens in your life.  I bet it will be amazing.


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