If our spirits sink, we can reach for a thought that feels better. What would that look like? One possibility is listing things that are going well for us. Here is what worked for today’s protagonist:
Chatting with a new friend, Sammie got
the recommendation to go take a class in a topic about which she did not feel good. Yuck! Instead of just saying no thank you, inside S the suggestion triggered a discouraged mood and a wash of “not good enough” feelings from her past.
She watched a movie to distract herself, then slept well over night. Next day upon waking Sammie still did not feel optimistic, a bit of a sag still in her spirit. A thought flashed: what HAD been going well for her? Could she recall some positive things?
Yes, she could:
- One time she lucked into samples of goat’s milk soap. She loved those; each time washing her hands, she enjoyed them and they lasted a good while.
- One supermarket in her area offers $.03/gal off the price at the gas pump for those who hold a courtesy card. Further it offers $.10/gal savings for every $100 in groceries. Recently when our star was about to fill her tank. the mechanism on the pump station told her she was eligible for $.10/gal off but then it did not price the gas that low as she pumped. It remained at $.03. Soon S was calling the Fuel Point Center and reporting the discrepancy. Not only did customer service make her whole, they gave her 200 extra points which will make a couple more tanks at lower price. Pretty cool!
- Dealing with an online outdoor equipment company online, Sammie purchased several pairs of boots sequentially, aspiring to find a pair with a good fit. The vendor had a policy that return shipping was on the customer. Through contact with a number of customer service people and some errors along the way, our heroine ended up getting free shipping to return boots– twice! And also in the end got a pair of waterproof hikers affordably, ones that thoroughly please her.
- One of of S’s friends, organizes homes as her profession. That friend had several bag of clothing from a wealthy client to discard. Our dear woman ended up with many lovely pieces of hand me downs. Another pleasure!
- Out doing errands with another friend, they visited LL Bean. The friend had a return from her mother, a woman who suffers from dementia. The friend said to Sammie, “why don’t you get something in the store with this return money– my mother does not need anything and neither do I.” Sammie got a great pair of leggings unexpectedly that day. Wow what good fortune!
- One of the bracelets S was wearing disappeared from her wrist. It had a funky clasp. From a good friend S had purchased much jewelry, delicate, hand-crafted creations of macrame and beads. As she made the discovery, she threw out a wish that the friend replace it for her. Later that day, the friend agreed to make her a new one, changing the finding that closes it on the wrist. Sammie got her wish!
- Shopping in a charity store, our heroine found great outer wear jacket like one she had been seeking– and for a great price. Fun score!
Making this list, our dear one felt so much better! Place your focus on things that delight you — whenever they occurred. The feeling of pleasure is called up in this now moment.
As you practice listing what you appreciate, formulating such a list becomes easier and easier. Also it works to create the going well roster when you feel satisfied, confident and then pull it out to read when you feel a dip.
Even knowing this practice works, S got a kick feeling it lift her big time. Fun to ride this wave to elevated mood! Very much worth the effort!
Want to run an experiment with this and report in the comment section? I’d love to read it. Let’s change our lives– it changes the world!