Much of how you navigate through life is determined by what you focus on.

Let me explain.

This morning I woke up in a perfectly happy state of mind. Thanks to the recent time change it was still early, the sun was shining, the Santa Ana winds were blowing warm air from the mountains and life was good.

Then, I opened my computer and started reading the latest polls on the upcoming election. I looked at graphs, maps, electoral votes, possible outcomes and I could feel my mood taking a downward turn …

What would happen in two days? Would the fate of the country be sealed, one way or another? Concern started nipping at me, then worry. All of a sudden, I was consumed with something I had very little control over. My vote was cast and fretting about the country’s future wasn’t very productive. Yet, reading and speculating was intriguing. So I kept at it. After a while I felt exhausted and aggravated. Politics don’t excite me and the uneasy feeling that something would go very wrong had replaced my happiness. It took a while – and putting my attention on something more positive – to let it go.

Maybe you have experienced this at times as well, certain thoughts and activities can invade your life and change the way you experience reality.

Whatever you focus on expands. How you use your attention will make the difference between loving your life or worrying about every little detail of it. If you consistently think about how you will make your next rent payment, whether your husband loves you or not or how to avoid dealing with a nasty co-worker, it will keep you in a tight grip. If you practice being grateful for what you have and adore your life instead, this too will grow and expand. Call it energy, the law of attraction or ‘the secret’, fact is you can use this wisdom to create the life you want.

My tip: Practice putting your attention on what makes you happy. Make a list of what puts you into a positive state of mind. The activities you love, the thoughts that enliven you, the people and places that inspire you. To understand the difference, also make a list of the thoughts and activities that have the opposite effect. This is the stuff that worries you, drags you down and makes you tense.

Use these lists to help you keep your focus on the light and positive. Whenever you notice your mood drop, put your attention on the things that lift you up. Cleaning does this for me. It reliably gets me out of a funk and into a positive state of mind. It helps me to relax and to let go. So, whenever I need a mood shift, that’s what I do.

It takes awareness and discipline to stay on the positive path. Worry, negativity, hurt, blame and criticism can be very persuasive. The choice of how you spend your days is yours. Personally, I enjoy them easy, happy and positive.

How about you? What are the things that consistently light you up? To share your observations or express your thoughts, please add a comment below or simply write to me. I’d love to hear from you.

As always, thanks for reading.


Photo Source: Pink Sherbet via Flickr under a Creative Commons License