Serenity Now

A couple years ago, I decided to change my outlook on life wherever possible. I was incredibly negative about almost everything, probably just an awful person to be around. I did the therapy thing, and it would help me for a day or two but then I would slip back into just being a negative Nancy.

I had no real joy in my life, or none that I was seeing. On advice of a friend I started to meditate and read up on Buddhism. I wasn’t looking to change my religion or my core beliefs; I was just looking for some inner peace that maybe turned my frown upside down.

Meditation and reading taught me never get too high or too low and to recognize the negative energy and change it. Literally move away from the negative or change it. When someone cut me off or something I would try to think “maybe they are in a hurry”, “maybe they really need to be somewhere” and my angry would slowly go away. I tried to put myself in their shoes, and a lot of the times it worked. I thought a lot about the Seinfeld episode where Kramer would say “Serenity Now” each time something bad was happening and he would just push it away, and eventually he went crazy. I had that in the back of my mind as I was trying to change.

I started small with my changes, walking away from negative conversations. Then I moved to posting these Friday messages on workout groups Facebook page I belong to. The messages I posted seemed to help others but they really helped me.  When I felt negative thoughts I would try to breathe my way out of it.  I would stop what I was doing, and just breathe.  These thoughts happened a lot at work.  I would just get up, go to a conference room and let them pass.  I did this enough times that now I can do this right from my desk.  If you walked by me you wouldn’t even know what I was doing.

As I post a lot on this blog, my life isn’t perfect. I definitely get down on myself and others, but I am so much quicker to get out of that mood. Lots of people say being positive is an easy choice and they are right. We all know people in our lives that are negative about everything. They post on social media (I used to be this person), they are incredibly quick to judge a person. It takes way too much energy to be like this, to be cynical of everything. Life is way too short to be a dick.

Doing something positive or nice for someone is almost the easiest thing on earth to do. It’s not always buying the coffee for the eight people behind you in line. It can be as easy as waving to a person who lets you cross the street or holding the door a few extra seconds for a person. When I do that or I see my kids do that it makes me happy, it puts a little pep in my step, and I hope it does it for the other person also. Maybe, just maybe, the person on the other end of that gesture changes the world.

I’m trying to be as happy as I can from the start of my day to the finish, you should try it. My life is filled with so much more. I can see all the things I am grateful for, things that have always been there, but I feel like my eyes and heart were just not open enough to see them.

This blog is a creative way for me to get my feelings out.  It is an outlet I use to help me, if you get some laughs or you smile as you are reading it than all the better.  I want to be a better person, to change the lives of whoever I can.

Let’s change the world, one person at a time.

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