What’s the first thought that pops into your mind when you wake up in the morning? If you’re like most people, you probably start thinking about all the work you have to do. The emails you have to reply to or the housework that needs to be done. But maybe there is a better way to start your morning.
What if instead of feeling drained about what’s in store for the rest of the day, you ask yourself this simple question from none other than the great Albert Einstein:
“The most important decision we make is whether we believe we live in a friendly or a hostile universe.”
Is the world you live in hostile or friendly? How do you look at it? It’s up to you to decide.
Why is this important?
Because whether you view the world as good or bad impacts your attitude and how you go about your day. Our attitude is the one thing we can control and by believing in a friendly universe we open our eyes to positivity and new opportunities. You’ll be less likely to react in a negative way when things happen that you didn’t plan.
Good begets good
The beginning of the day is the best time to ask yourself this question because it sets up your attitude for the rest of the day.
Susan Reynolds, co-author of Train Your Brain to Get Happy, says that “feeling pleasure can be so stimulating for your brain that it is primed to respond to pleasure in a way that reinforces that pleasure.”
To put it another way, the more good you look for in the world the more you’ll receive in return. If you choose to wake up and see the world as bad you’ll feel frustrated and angry. Nothing works and you’ll constantly wait for things to go wrong just to prove that the world really is out to get you. The truth is the world is completely indifferent and it’s only your mind that labels it as good or bad.
It’s good for you physically as well.
Choosing to think positively provides a lot of health benefits too. According to research, it reduces your risk of depression, decreases anxiety and makes you even more more resilient against whatever bug is going around. People who look on the bright side of life tend to live longer and they have an easier time coping with stresses.
This doesn’t mean being positive all the time
I’m not saying that being positive all the time is the answer either. There’s a lot that goes wrong in all of our lives and it’s important to face these challenges head on.
But instead of resisting these negative emotions, you embrace them and look at them from an optimistic point of view so you can get over them. You don’t view these negative events or emotions as proof that the world hates you. but you realize that this is simply part of being human. Acceptance is a far more powerful reaction than negativity.
Remember that you do have a choice. Do yourself a favor and choose the good when you wake up. Perhaps Harvey Mackay said it best with this quote:
“When you wake up every day, you have two choices. You can either be positive or negative; an optimist or a pessimist. I choose to be an optimist. It’s all a matter of perspective.”
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