By David Joel Miller, MS, Licensed Therapist & Licensed Counselor.
Is today a good day?
Would you recognize a great day if you had one? We humans frequently have a mental bias that results in us seeing the bad and missing the good. If all you look for are the things that went wrong today, over time you will come to think that all days are bad ones and that your life is destined to become unhappy.
If you start looking for the positive experiences in life you will find that every day there are random positive events going on in your life largely unnoticed. Try doing some investigative work and finding these positive events for a more positive life. Here is my list of things you may have missed that could point to your having more good days than you are recognizing.
1. Someone was glad to see you today.
Did your child, partner, or pet greet you this morning? Did they say something to you when you got home? When we are rushing from place to place and person to person we can miss those in our day who were glad to see us.
Did you get a smile or a good morning from a coworker? Did you return that greeting? Work can be stressful at times but watch for those who are positive and glad to see you. Recognizing this greeting can set the tone for the rest of your day.
What about pets? Was there a dog that wagged his tail for you today? Did you stop to pet that creature? Did you get a cat purr? Purring for cats is the equivalent of an audible smile. Make sure you acknowledge that pet of yours. They are wishing you a great day if only you could stop to notice.
2. You like the work you do.
Earning a living can be stressful and make you anxious sometimes. If you have a job you like make sure you notice this and be thankful for it. If you love what you do it can bring joy and happiness to your life. Don’t like what you do? Think about how you can change jobs, start a new career, or look for ways to change your attitude towards the job you do have.
3. You look forward to getting home.
Are there things at home you like to do? People, you enjoy being with? Why or why not? You work for a living, coming home should not be a chore. If it is, take another look at what you are doing and why. There is no point in putting off being happy to earn a living so you can go home and be unhappy.
Work on your relationships. Get professional help if need be. Look at some blog posts. There have been several on counselorssoapbox on improving your relationships. Do you put the same effort into making your relationships work that you put into building a career? Unhappiness at home carries over into the world of work.
4. You learned something new today.
If you enjoy learning then every day is a chance to learn something new. Those new ideas can go unnoticed in the pile of things we call our “to do” lists. Make it a rule to learn something new each day. Ask your partner or children what they learned today. Share what you learned. See how you can grow and become a better person each and every day.
5. If you solved a problem it was a good day.
Problems crop up all the time. You spend most of your day moving from issue to issue. The end result of all this problem solving is to develop a “problem-saturated” story of your life. Before long you can think that your whole life is one problem after another.
Did you forget all the problems you have solved? Most of us overcome a host of problems each and every day. What we may fail to do is to think back over the day and recognize those successes. Give yourself credit for things that you accomplished. Give yourself a mental round of applause. See you may be a fantastic problem solver, but if all you are remembering is that you faced problems today rather than remembering the ones you solved, life can look like one giant problem.
6. You were of service to someone else.
It is easy to drift into the habit of measuring the day based on what we have and what we receive rather than on the time we were able to be of service. Research has found that doing for others can result in significantly more happiness than being selfish and doing only for yourself.
Have you ever done anything in your life for a child or someone who really needed help? How did that make you feel? Did that child “get over on you” or did it feel good to help someone who needed your help?
If feeling good is so happy-making, why do we all resist being of service to others? Try looking for ways you can do for others and that doing will result in a happier you. Why not be really selfish and do all you can to be of service to others today?
Now that you look at it, was today a better day than you originally thought? What other ways might daily happiness be going unnoticed and unrecorded?
For more on this topic see the other counselorssoapbox.com post under Happiness.
Staying connected with David Joel Miller
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Story Bureau is a thrilling Dystopian Post-Apocalyptic adventure in the Surviving the Apocalypse series.
Baldwin struggles to survive life in a post-apocalyptic world where the government controls everything.
As society collapses and his family gets plunged into poverty, Baldwin takes a job in the capital city, working for a government agency called the Story Bureau. He discovers the Story Bureau is not a benign news outlet but a sinister government plot to manipulate society.
Bumps on the Road of Life. Whether you struggle with anxiety, depression, low motivation, or addiction, you can recover. Bumps on the Road of Life is the story of how people get off track and how to get your life out of the ditch.
Dark Family Secrets: Doris wants to get her life back, but small-town prejudice could shatter her dreams.
Casino Robbery Arthur Mitchell escapes the trauma of watching his girlfriend die. But the killers know he’s a witness and want him dead.
Planned Accidents The second Arthur Mitchell and Plutus mystery.
Letters from the Dead: The third in the Arthur Mitchell mystery series.
What would you do if you found a letter to a detective describing a crime and you knew the writer and detective were dead, and you could be next?
Sasquatch. Three things about us, you should know. One, we have seen the past. Two, we’re trapped there. Three, I don’t know if we’ll ever get back to our own time.
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Thank you for your post.
My day starts usually with being grateful for another day that I get to spend with my husband and family. Grateful for the opportunities I have again to make a difference to my life and hopefully others.
Thank you again for your post.
Glad you liked the post. Keep making a difference.
Great post. It really helped change my view on my everyday world. Thank you!
Glad you liked the post.
“It is easy to drift into a habit.”
This I can support by own experience, but let me add some thoughts. The thing with us human beings is, that we drift SO easily into any bad habits, and that we have SO MUCH to work and to educate ourselfes to shift us into a good and healthy habit.
The bad direction is always the default setting of humans, isn’t it? Here comes in the self discipline, the will and the wish to give advice to one-self, the ability to overcome the “innere schweinehund” as we germans say.
It takes us a lot of educational effort, a lot of will-power and of fighting energy to drive us into any helathy habits, to push us forward to the most needed things that our life deserves.
At that point is it very unhelpful to fall into any substance abuse, to have issues with porn, interent abuse, or other enslave mechanisms. me thinks, the modern world has a bunch of addicting offers, that we do NOT easily withstand, if we do it AT ALL. Nobody is safe, everybody is in danger of being attacked and seriously wounded by such evil offers.
That makes it even more needy to have firmly grounded therapists and counselors.
Thanks for the comment. Yes I think we easily drift into things without ever thinking about the consequences, just because it is easy to do. Best wishes.