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Sunday
Jul082012

Positive Thinking

Jewish Mothers worry. It's both a genetic and learned behavior but it's something we must fight against for our own well-being and for the well-being of those poor unfortunate souls who happen to be related to us. A negative state of mind will attract negative energy so it's imperative that we train ourselves to focus on the positive. When you open the mail to discover a check for $100 that you did not expect to receive your first thought should NOT be 'Oh great, I wonder what horrible unexpected bill is in the next envelope' but rather 'YIPPEE how lucky I am, and I TOTALLY deserve this!' When your Son announces that he just got offered a fantastic well paid job before even graduating college don't think 'Oh great he's moving to LA and will probably be murdered' but rather 'YIPPEE he'll be able to pay all his college loans and we can have lots of nice holidays in California!' 

When your husband goes to buy you a bottle of water during the movie and isn't back after twenty minutes, don't assume 'Oh great he's probably had a heart attack and I'm going to be LONELY and DESTITUTE' but rather 'No doubt the lines are hideous due to the shortage of staff and how sweet of him to persevere even though he'll miss the opening scenes.'

Even though we all know that worrying about stuff that will probably never happen is RIDICULOUS it's extremely difficult to stop doing it. 

This Worrywart Syndrome is not exclusive to Jewish Mothers (although they do have it down to a fine art) generally I find that most people live their lives in anticipation of how great things would be if only......................... fill in the blank with whatever you are currently wishing for. When the longed for event or change in circumstances finally manifests, instead of feeling unadulterated joy, a sense of doom and feelings of guilt prevail because on some level one does not feel worthy of good fortune. 

Actually this may only be true if you are over the age of twenty five because I have noticed that the majority of young people today seem to TRULY believe that they are totally deserving of EXTREME good fortune regardless of whether they have done anything at ALL to create it. There is a sense of arrogant entitlement that is most unpleasant and a propensity to believe that NOTHING but the best should be bestowed upon them coupled with TOTAL shock and disbelief that they may have to struggle EVER. If you are currently under twenty five and open your mail tomorrow to discover a check for $100 that you were not expecting your first thought should NOT be 'How annoying why wasn't it $1000.00?' but rather 'YIPPEE how lucky I am, I really don't deserve this, I think I'll buy Mom some flowers.' If you get offered a fantastic well paid job before even graduating college don't think 'How annoying I wanted to bum round Europe for a year and then live at home for another five sponging off Mom and Dad' but rather ' YIPPEE I'll be self sufficient at last and able to cover all my college loan debts.' 

The cure for both (young and old) is simple gratitude. When we focus on being TRULY GRATEFUL for what we have in any given moment we feel positive and uplifted - worrisome thoughts are banished as is the inclination to believe that we would be COMPLETELY happy if ONLY.......................fill in the blank with whatever you are currently wishing for.


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