Have a positive, friendly attitude

Article content

Mentally and physically, I think there is a lot more to keeping our mind and body active than exercise, brain games and eating vegetables.

It’s an attitude. It’s a mindset, a belief, a conviction that we are worth the effort. It all starts with a willingness to be happy, uplifted, welcoming. Wishing things were different won’t do diddly squat; you have to put some energy into it.

We need to do things we are not comfortable doing. Maybe you are not a person who mingles easily with strangers. Maybe you don’t want to go to the coffee shop every afternoon with the gang. Not everyone is inclined to join a gym or play cards.

They say brain games will help keep our minds active but games might not be your thing. Not everyone enjoys doing Find the Word, crossword puzzles or colouring. Some of us do not love Sudoku. I get that. I don’t like that stuff, either.

We get into a bit of a contented rut and dig in when anyone tries to winch us out. Now, if you enjoy being lonely and miserable, have at it, but if you would rather have fun, laugh, learn new things and make friends then you have to give yourself the opportunity to do that. You need to focus on giving yourself the best chance to have a productive, fully functioning, mindful existence instead of withering away in isolation.


Story continues below
This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.

Article content

Think of it like this. No one loves to go to the dentist but if you have a really bad tooth that hurts all the time and you can’t eat, you suck it up and go and get it fixed, right? So, if you are alone a lot, don’t feel very good most of the time, are bored, depressed or unhappy, you need to fix it. You can’t really want to live like that. All of us want to live our best life, an active and positive life, so you need to get out of your own way.

Now, no one says you have to become a different person but you need to take some small steps to adjust your outlook, advance your thought process, and enhance your health – physical, mental and emotional. You might have to do some unsettling things in order to have a much happier and constructive life.

Not a social person? Start small. Next time you are getting groceries ask the check-out person how they are. Ask if it’s been a busy day and how long they have to work today? They will be delightfully surprised that anyone cares and it is a good way for you to make contact with a stranger and it only takes a minute. While you are waiting in line make comment on the weather to the person behind you.

When sitting in dour silence at a doctor or dentist’s office compliment the scarf of the person next to you. Tell the mother of a crying baby it’s OK because we have all been there.

If all that is still a bit much, start out even slower. As you walk down the street, make eye contact with each person you pass and smile. This won’t be near as hard as you think since most folks won’t make eye contact with you but those who do will be enriched by your acknowledgement and you will feel good about it, too. I know you will feel a bit silly at first but soon it will become easy. If you are not ready to start a conversation with the person next to you in a waiting room just smile at the person across from you. You can do this at the gas bar, walking the aisle at Walmart, drug store, liquor store, grocery store…

It doesn’t cost a thing but it will make you feel good and that makes you feel better. And just think of the boost you gave to each of the recipients of your positive, friendly attitude.

You may never be a public speaker but before you know it you will be confident enough to join a book club, go on a bus trip, take an art class, help at a church supper or maybe even speak up at a meeting.

Jump in or inch in. Life is good so don’t just watch it pass by.


News Near Tillsonburg

This Week in Flyers