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Three Simple Things

I’ll tell you about three things you could do every day that might make your experience here on the planet a little more enjoyable.

You certainly don’t have to do these things.  Just because they work for me, doesn’t mean they’ll work for you, right?  After all, we’re all on a different part of the path, we’re all at a different place in the journey, and we’re all unique.  The things that one person finds to be extremely effective in moving themselves to the next level may not be exactly what the doctor ordered for someone else.  I get that.

Still, I do believe that we can share things with each other, and at the very least, these things can cause us to reflect and consider changes we might make.  Sometimes, that slight change in perspective or in the habits we have developed can make all the difference in the world.

Like you’ve heard me say a whole bunch of times, if you’re not growing, you’re dying, and if I may borrow a lyric from John Mellencampdyin’ to me don’t sound like all that much fun!

So here are three simple things that I do each day to keep it moving forward...

1. Wake up and start to feel thankful. This one sounds really easy, but I’ll make a small confession here.  I’m not a morning person.  So for years, my first thought of the day wasn’t really how thankful I was to be alive.  It was usually something like, “oh god, it’s only Tuesday”, or “why didn’t I go to bed before midnight last night?”  So I know it’s not the easiest habit to establish.  However, I will tell you this, if you make the conscious decision and put the initial effort into this one, it can become a habit you won’t regret.  At least, that’s my story, and yes, I’m sticking to it!

When you open your eyes, just remember what an awesome gift life really is.  Think about something, anything, that you’re honestly thankful for, and dwell on that for a few minutes as you get your butt out of bed.  Here’s what I’ll promise you; you will start to think of other things and in your mind that you’re thankful for, and you’ll begin to build momentum, until you start to feel pretty damn good about life in general, and your life, specifically.  This is an outstanding habit to develop!

2. Smile and greet each person you meet with a little bit of enthusiasm and energy.  This is one of the greatest things you can do for yourself, and yet this is one of those things that very few people have the guts to even try.  Most of us will glide through our day, making minimal eye contact with the other humans who are wandering through our reality, and not even offer up a fizzle of positive energy to any of them.  What a bummer!

You’ll be amazed at how a simple smile on your  part will cause others to smile back.  And you’ll be even more amazed at how good that makes you feel.  It’s pretty awesome.  Smiles are more contagious than yawns.  Seriously.  And they bring out the best in everyone.  If you decide to get crazy and add a meaningful greeting, you will be rewarded by finding out that some of those shadowy figures you cross paths with as you go about your day, are actually really cool people.  But, even if you don’t make a new friend every single day, if you start flashing some teeth and giving away some of your good mojo every single day, you’re going to dig your stay here on the planet a whole lot more.  This one really is fun!

3. Find the positive in every situation.  Okay, this is this the one that you probably rolled your eyes at, right?  You’re thinking, “sometimes there’s just not a positive to be found”.  I would respectfully disagree, but I can relate to that type of thinking, because I thought the same thing for many years.  Now look, I’m not saying that you should start whistling zip-a-dee-doo-dah if you get a flat tire on the freeway at night.  That would be pretty silly.  Although, you might feel a little better.  Maybe.  You might just feel silly.

Be realistic with this.  My suggestion is to look at what the good might be that comes from any situation which seems challenging or difficult.  Start to think of delays or down time as being purposeful.  In other words, instead of getting pissed off because you are delayed in traffic, see that maybe the timing for everything is actually perfect.  Maybe there’s a great reason that you were late.  Look for what that great reason might be.  Or, instead of becoming frustrated when you feel like you’re not being productive for an hour or so, see it as a chance to get quiet and get to know yourself a little better.  Pause and do some introspection.  Take a look inside.  Then you can get busy again.

Just look for the positive.  My experience has been that you will find whatever it is you’re looking for in this life.  Even if it’s in a simple situation that might otherwise seem trivial, or a challenging ordeal that would normally be discouraging.  Try it.  You’ll like it.  I’m positive!

Those are my three things.  If you’re up for it, put them into practice and see if they make a difference for you.  I’m pretty sure they will.

You may have some other great habits that you’ve developed over the years.  What are the things you do each day to stay motivated?  Please share with all of us by commenting below.  I’d love to engage in some meaningful conversation and see how many great ideas we can pass along to each other!

Reader Feedback

4 Responses to “Three Simple Things”

  1. Great post, Mike!
    It helps me, too! (We have morning prayers to start the day, where many of my friends join me who bring smiles to my face, and watching them manage to pull off their days with their struggles reminds me to do the same…)

  2. Mike,

    Excellent post and a good one to read first thing on a Monday morning! I like the order in which you outlined the habits starting with being thankful to our heavenly father…thankful to be alive, for the gift of life as you mentioned, friends, etc.

    Habit #2 ties in beautifully with ‘what you pour out into the lives of other come back twofold’. Even if people don’t smile back they may wonder why you’re so happy…and I find even if there’s something bothering me and I make an effort to smile with others or say positive to make someone else feel better, I stop focusing on my troubles. It’s not always easy, but it works. And so does #3.

    Leaving you with a smile and a wish for a great day!

  3. avatar Iris says:

    Thanks for this. I’ve really enjoyed reading and most of it can be applicable!

    Thanks and Happy New Year!!!

  4. avatar Kay Butler says:

    Hi, Mike: Your three simple habits are great. When I wake up I usually pray the rosary and before eating breakfast, say my own version of table blessing/what I’m grateful for. Whenever stopping at the local post office, either a person going out or in holds the door for me and I thank them with a smile and vice versa. That keeps me positive and hanging in there!

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