What Are You Looking For?

We all know someone who just seems to have rotten luck right? No matter what they do, they just can’t catch a break and everything goes wrong for them. They’ll be the one to tell you about how unsafe it is to drive a car or fly a plane, and how everything on the internet is horrible and negative.

And we all know another person who is always super positive. Everything just seems to fall into place for them. They constantly seem to meet really interesting people, and their plans are full of nice surprises. They only see the good in each situation.

We all live in the same world – a world that’s equal parts wonderful and terrible. Many of us are having a similar experience, so how is it that two people could see it so differently?

Someone who defaults to negative thoughts, who thinks that only bad things happen to them, that the world is against them,  and they never get any luck will be looking out for all the bad stuff – and every time they see it, their viewpoint will be reinforced. The slightest challenge becomes a mountain to overcome, and further proves that life is a cruel game.

But the opposite is also true.

Someone who sees the world in a positive light, assuming that people are friendly and experiences are good will find that too. And every time they get a smile from a stranger, or an outcome is positive, their viewpoint will be reinforced. The slightest challenge becomes an opportunity to grow.

By looking out for something, chances are that is what you’ll find. It’s a self-fulfilling prophecy. If you tell yourself you’re going to have a shitty time, you probably will.

Of course, it’s impossible to be positive all the time. Life will throw you some curve balls, and there isn’t a whole lot you can do to avoid some of them. What you can do something about is how you choose to react. By keeping hold of the negativity, and carrying it around with you the chances are that will impact the rest of your experiences. It is rare for an experience to be entirely positive or entirely negative, but by focusing on the good, it’s likely you’ll have a far happier time.

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a streamlined mind is my goal, this is my journey.

2 thoughts on “What Are You Looking For?”

  1. So true that our world is equal parts wonderful and terrible, James, and I agree that we’ll find whatever it is we’re looking for. It’s up to us. I really notice that in my own life. When I’m in a negative frame of mind, I see little upsets or disappointments as extremely important, but if I wake up the next day determined to be positive, those same upsets don’t seem so bad and even seem like opportunities for growth. Having just started my new teaching job that is really challenging, I’m trying hard to keep seeing opportunities for learning and celebrating small victories rather than focussing on everything I’m doing ‘wrong’ in the classroom.


    1. It’s amazing how different a situation can seem when you’re in a bad mood as opposed to when you feel great. The important thing is to notice that your emotions are distorting things, and not make any rash decisions. Easier said than done, but through practice it gets much easier.
      I’m sure your doing great in your new job. Don’t be too hard on yourself, especially with something new. The best teachers are the ones who really care, and it’s very clear that you do.


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