What I Want

I’ve been preaching this positive thinking thing for a while. I’m no Pollyanna, but I’m close. My mantra is, “If you expect bad things to happen, then bad things will happen.” It’s sort of a longer way to say, “Have faith!” What people might not realize is that I haven’t always been this way.

I grew up in a family constantly looking over their collective shoulders. Very superstitious and very negative. There was always some disaster waiting around the corner for us to walk by so he could pounce. And if some misery did befall us, it was never due to our own actions or choices. Nope, it was the Universe conspiring against us.

A few years ago, I met someone who had a completely opposite view of life. He changed my life in many ways, but one of the best things he did for me was teach me to have faith. And I’m not talking religion. I have that kind of faith as well, but this is more faith in the Universe or Karma or whatever other force you want to imagine.

My mantra comes straight from my friend. He certainly said it to me often enough. The clincher happened when I followed his advice and noticed a real change. When I stopped waiting for the other shoe to fall, it didn’t. When I stopped expecting things to go wrong, they didn’t.

Now I have another friend who has gotten on this positive train with me. We’ve put a new plan into action where we are not only thinking positively, we’re writing it down. Sounds easy enough, right? Wrong.

I started writing my “What I Want” list today and found it’s harder than I expected. First, you have to know what you want. If I knew that, I probably wouldn’t need the list. Determined, I started typing and what I want sort of just showed up on the page. It’s a good list. Not too crazy, but no lowering of standards. That’s good for me. Since the list is quite personal, I won’t share the entire thing. But I will share the last bit because I figure it’s likely what most people want.

I want the courage to set my goals high, to accomplish those goals, and to push others to reach their true potential. I want to show my daughter how important it is to live, to laugh, and to love, but most of all to love herself. I want to be as healthy as I can be and to love myself enough to do what it takes to stay that way.

Do you believe you’re a positive person? What do you do to keep the faith? Have you tried making a list like this and if not are you willing to try? What are some of the (not so personal) things you’d put on your list? And I think we can all agree World Peace is on all our lists so we’ll call that a given.

19 thoughts on “What I Want”

  1. Diana says:

    One of my favorite things that I’ve ever read was (and I summarize) “It takes a reason to be angry, but you don’t need a reason to be happy” Isn’t that lovely? Since then, I’ve adopted that mindset. I walk around happy to just be alive and able to think for myself, and I find that most people around me respond to it in a positive manner. It’s difficult to stay angry around someone who is smiling and laughing. It’s like when a baby laughs and everyone around the baby smiles. Because you can’t help but be infected with joy.

    Terri, I love your “want”. It’s such a powerful want. I want to have the faith and strength to pursue my dreams and believe that they will turn out right. I want to be able to measure my life by the number of people who measure their lives against mine. I want to inspire children to believe in themselves. And most of all, I want to be happy and content with the person I am.

  2. Marnee Jo says:

    I love your want too, Ter. Good job!!

    I’m a pretty positive person. In fact, I would say I’m almost annoyingly positive.

    Diana, I love that saying. My new mantra.

    I don’t know if I’ve ever written a want list. I have goals, yes, but I try to focus on enjoying the things I have.

    DH and I are in a period of our life (new family, one income after having 2 for a long time, etc) where there are way more wants than we can count. So, we try to just focus on the amazing haves (each other, our DS, health, family and friends). It keeps us more grounded right now.

    Great post, hon.

  3. Quantum says:

    Terri, The picture of the kitten seeing a lion reflected in the mirror says it all for me. I have taken a copy of that! Who makes it happen? You do!

    I don’t think there is a simple formula for achieving happiness. Philosophers have scratched their heads over this for centuries. I’m convinced that a holistic world view is important. Mind, instincts and soul have to be in tune with the universe. Its also important to have goals and very important to have like minded friends around you. With Diana and Marnee, you can’t go wrong!

    Blimey what a thought provoking start to the day! Terri, I always suspected that you were more than a pretty face. Now I know! *g*

    Oh, nearly forgot the question. Yes I am positive (unless my latest theory isn’t working!). I don’t really have faith, just a love of nature and an awe for the being or process that created the world. I don’t normally make lists but keep highest priority items uppermost in my mind.

    Awesome blog…..Can’t wait to hear Hellion’s or Sin’s philosophy!

  4. terrio says:

    Di! You are a walking ball of joy and I love you for that. How anyone could meet you and not smile the rest of the day, I do not know.

    I love that measure my life line. Gosh, that’s really good. And doesn’t it feel good to write that and put it out there for the Universe to hear? Read? You know what I mean.

  5. terrio says:

    Marn – There’s actual no material stuff on my list. It’s more like a list of how you want your life to work out. Like Di’s want to be content. That sort of includes all that material stuff under one umbrella and it doesn’t mean she’s asking for a million dollars. Does that make sense?

    I’m thinking more along the lines of when I’m 80 I want to look back and feel like I accomplished something, survived something with grace, overcame some things, and am satisfied with my life. That means stating today what I want to experience between now and then.

    I’m making a mess of this explanation but I’m saying this has nothing to do with material things. Though it can since each list is unique to the person who makes it.

  6. terrio says:

    Q – Isn’t that picture great? I had something else, but when I saw that picture, I had to use it.

    Being happy is definitely not simple and I don’t mean to make it sound that way. But looking for happiness without a map is going to be much more difficult than looking with one. I’m suggesting creating a map. Knowing what you want and where you want to go are the first steps to getting there.

    Writing it down is no guarantee and what you write now might be totally different from what you’ll write in ten years. But I think putting it out there is still important and can make a real difference.

    And you do have faith, Q. Faith in your theories, your fellow scientists and in the ones you love. Faith can be many things, that’s what’s so great about it. *g*

  7. skirbo says:

    A heavy topic for first thing in the morning, but I’ll give it a shot. I totally believe in the power of positivity. I’ve seen it in action in my own life, whenever I’ve managed that mindset.

    I’m a fairly negative person though and have been my entire life. I give up easily. I become depressed easily. I struggle to make positive changes in my life and when I do make them I struggle even harder to keep them. It is almost worse watching the goals you managed to reach slip away through your fingers like sand than it is never to have achieved your goals at all.

    Oddly enough, I don’t feel like the universe conspires against me. I just feel that I’m (generally) not deserving of good things. I’m bad about self-sabotaging. I’m about to be 38 and I still don’t think I’ve grown up. 🙂

    Sarah

  8. terrio says:

    Sarah, my dear, we need to work on this. I’ll tell you the same thing I told a friend last week – YOU DESERVE EVERYTHING YOU WANT! And you’re right, it’s not easy to maintain the positive thoughts when life is kicking you in the ass.

    I managed to loose weight a few years ago and have since put it back on. It’s almost more depressing now to have these rolls back after working so hard to get them off. But I have to believe I can do it again. If I don’t, they’ll stay. And no one wants that. *g*

    You need a positive voice in your ear, let me know. I’m more than happy to help.

  9. J.K. Coi says:

    Terri, gotta love the power of positive thinking. Isn’t that what the book “the Secret” was all about? And you’re absolutely right. It totally works. When we set our minds to something, we can truly achieve anything!

    And I love your want too.

    I want to be able to show my son that hard work will always be worth the results, that believing in yourself is an important part of any task you undertake, and that falling down doesn’t mean that you’ve only scraped your knee, it means you have a chance to see things from a different perspective and get back on your feet with that in mind for the next leg of your journey.

  10. terrio says:

    J.K. – Love that idea of changing perspective. I’ve been told it’s part of being Capricorn (isn’t your DH Cap too?) that I hate the word “can’t”. To me, there is always a solution. Whether we go over the mountain, around the mountain, or through the mountain, we’re getting to the other side of that mountain. LOL!

    So falling down just means you can find another solution.

  11. J.K. Coi says:

    Yes, my DH is a capricorn, and my son is a sagitarius. It’s scary really!

  12. terrio says:

    Oh, I don’t know about the sagitarius thing. That’s one I haven’t encountered yet. LOL! Where’s Fran when I need her?

  13. MsHellion says:

    Quantum, the CDs I’ve been listening to (The Secret) refers to Quantum physics! It’s all very cool! I didn’t know Quantum physics was like that…or is it? Maybe you should listen to The Secret and let us know if they got the concept right. *LOL*

  14. Quantum says:

    Terri love, Yes I do have faith (with a small f) just as you say.
    Different people follow different routes and philosophies. If you find a way that works for you then I say stick with it!

    Hellion. Osho’s book ‘The secret’ is part of Muslim philosophy and I believe embraces pantheism. I don’t think Quantum theory has much bearing on it!

    I guess you were thinking of Rhonda Byrne’s book of the same title. I have just obtained a copy and after a quick glance I am a bit sceptical about the relevance of quantum theory. There is no accepted quantum theory of mind and the book has taken bits of standard Quantum theory out of context. It is true that ‘the observer’ is an integral part of the theory and there are some experiments (unconfirmed) in which deep meditation can influence states of the material world, but statements like

    The law of attraction is the law of creation. Quantum physicists tell
    us that the entire Universe emerged from thought! You create your
    life through your thoughts and the law of attraction, and every
    single person does the same. It doesn’t just work if you know about
    it. It has always been working in your life and every other person’s
    life throughout history. When you become aware of this great law,
    then you become aware of how incredibly powerful you are, to be
    able to THINK your life into existence.

    seem to me to be ludicrous extrapolations from hard scientific knowledge. Not saying its wrong, just that its not accepted science as I know it!

  15. MsHellion says:

    It does seem a stretch, but there was that quote I’ve always loved: “If you think you can’t, you’re right.” I think our thoughts do hold us back from doing so much more, from reaching our true potential. I don’t know if I buy into it on the level that The Secret (the 2nd version you referred to) presents it, but I do think Faith does contribute a lot to what we do accomplish.

  16. terrio says:

    I agree. I don’t think I can think the country out of this horrible economy, but I think I can think myself into a smaller pair of jeans. LOL! With eating less and exercising thrown in but I have to think myself into doing those things too. 🙂

  17. Quantum says:

    Absolutely!

    I have no doubt that the mind can have a huge influence on your own body (think of athlete striving to break a record) or on the minds of others (cf great leader inspiring his people). The mind and brain are also one of the most fascinating and complex challenges for science to understand. Afraid we are not there yet but Quantum theory may well have a role to play in the final theory.

    I will have a closer look at ‘The Secret’ when time permits to see if I can find anything new and worthwhile. The trouble is that so many crack pots invoke quantum theory without really understanding it and make outrageous claims, particularly in the ‘New Age’ literature. One needs to be a little wary!

    I’ve no doubt that you ladies have your feet firmly grounded though, so I needn’t worry *g*

  18. I’m positive with everyone else but myself.*g* Not that I’m negative, just extremely cautiously optimistic (two adverbs, bad me). But as they say in the Maine State Lottery ads, “You can’t win if you don’t play.”

    My most heartfelt wishes and wants are for the health and happiness of my family—everything else is really unimportant (except that world peace stuff).

  19. irisheyes says:

    Awesome blog, Terri. I, too, like your want.

    I’m thought of as a negative person but I’m really a lot more positive than people think. I believe it’s because I was really, really negative when I was younger and I’m growing out of it. It’s definitely a frame of mind. It also helps when you get little victories. See something you want to achieve, go for it and succeed. I think that’s what turned the tide for me.

    My main want would be like Maggie’s… health and happiness for those I love. Other than that I think I would like to live my life by being honest and true to myself. (That’s a huge thing for someone who has spent her life people-pleasing.) Positive self esteem is a powerful thing. I’d really love to instill that in my children and give them the tools to achieve their dreams.

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