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10 PERSONAL GROWTH
• you develop skills that will help you in
your next job
• the rude people at work help you to
appreciate your husband.
Now you might say, “Let’s be realistic.
Some disasters have no upside!” Here’s
• Lousy things happen.
• Happy people have the habit of saying,
“What’s good about this?” It’s how you
stop negative thoughts in their tracks.
One negative thought attracts another.
One positive thought attracts another.
When things go wrong, find an upside.
2. When You Are Sad or Grieving:
get into nature
When life hurts, nature heals. Ocean
breezes and peaceful forests restore us
in ways that stinky pubs and shopping
malls and bad TV never can. Walk on
the beach or in the bush, sit in a park or
a garden. Go fishing. You’ll think better
thoughts. There’s nothing to figure out,
it just happens.
Get into nature. Make it a habit.
3. When you feel like complaining:
Stop moaning about the weather, the
government and your arthritis. We talk
about what we think about. That is
obvious. The reverse is also true. We
think about what we talk about.
The more you complain, the more you fill
your head with unhappy thoughts.
If you want to talk about fixing a
problem, wonderful! But mindless
complaining sabotages your happiness
and no one cares that you didn’t sleep
last night and no one wants to hear
about your haemorrhoid operation.
4. When You Are Feeling
Overwhelmed: get rid of the junk
You suffer stress when you are
surrounded by junk – psychological tests
Did you ever get into a friend’s
car among pizza cartons, hamburger
wrappings and half-eaten apples? It’s
hard to think happy thoughts!
You feel more in control in a tidy
office. You feel more peaceful in a clean
house. It’s one reason why we love to stay
in nice hotels – it is such a joy to check
into a clean room and not be surrounded
by piles of old clothes and handbags and
last week’s newspapers.
Are you too stressed to tidy your
whole bedroom? Tidy one drawer today
and another tomorrow. Need to organise
your office? Do just one shelf today.
You’ll feel better.
Get some garbage bags. Buy a broom!
Better to live in a one-room studio that is
clean than in a mansion that is a mess!
5. When Negative People Are Driving
You Nuts: give yourself a break!
Are you surrounded by people who
whinge about the weather, the
government, the price of petrol and their
bunions? Whingers will drag you down!
Soon enough, you start to think like
they think. You start to gripe like they
gripe. Negative becomes normal. What
can you do? Spend time with happy
people, somehow. If you have only one
happy friend, visit him more often. If
you don’t know any motivated people,
find some. Join a cycling group, a dance
S even Ways to Eliminate
Are you hounded by
Bestselling author of
HOW LIFE WORKS,
shares seven tips
to change your
oes this ever happen? You have
one slightly negative thought,
“I’m short of cash this week”.
This leads to another negative
thought ... “It’s because I’m underpaid
at work” ... and another ... “and I’m
under appreciated at home” ... followed
by ... “Tonight I’ll have to cook dinner,
why can’t my stupid husband get off his
backside. My mother always told me I
was making a big mistake and now I’ve
got a headache, maybe it’s a tumour!”
Negative thoughts are like rats. One
shows up and before you know it they
have taken over.
You can beat negative thoughts.
1. When things go wrong ask yourself
“ What’s good about this?”
There is an upside to every situation.
EXAMPLE: You are drowning in debt.
You say, “What can possibly be good
about being broke?”
• you develop character and
• you learn how to budget
• you discover who your friends are.
EXAMPLE: You break your leg. You
ask, “What’s good about this?”
• you get to rest
• you learn to empathise with
• you get to read some great books.
EXAMPLE: You spend your workdays
serving rude customers. You ask,
“What’s good about handling rude
• you learn tolerance
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