A positive attitude can help you accomplish great things in your life. It might be the most important attribute a person can have. It enhances your physical and mental health.
Many things are beyond our control. We learn what’s important is not what happened but how we reacted to it.
There are so many good things that surround us. Take some time to start and end days by contemplating them. And in-between, too.
Journaling positive things every day confirms our good fortune. Like others, I keep a daily gratitude journal that reminds me to appreciate great things.
Consider people, experiences and things. Pay attention to the little details that collectively add up to be big things.
People are the most important. Parents are mentors by their example. My wife is chef-like who prepares delicious meals. Children and grandchildren bless you with their love and curiosity. Friends who take time to contact you are priceless.
Co-workers who go the extra mile are often on my list. Park maintenance staff stand on ice in freezing weather to flood the hockey rink and skating pond. Recreation staff work long days on weekends to host basketball and softball tournaments with 30-40 teams that bring fresh visitor money to local businesses. Zookeepers endure bitter cold temperatures to care for our critters.
Volunteers are often on my “great” list. Sportsmen’s Club members mentor girls and boys at fishing derbies and youth hunts. Parents coach their children in youth sports. Special Olympics depends on kind volunteers. The arts thrive with many who support our local culture. Positive Kinship Program adult role models spend considerable time with children who need a friend.
Positive experiences are plentiful in the parks-recreation profession. Music in the Park shows off our many talented local musicians. Next summer it will be in a state-of-the-art band shell. Youth sports like football on a crisp fall night are fun to watch. It is invigorating to cross-country ski through woods shared by whitetail deer. Waterfowl migration with thousands of snow geese flying above welcomes the spring season. Some have already moved into Missouri.
Too often, we take for granted the things that many people in the world cannot claim. We are mostly safe with no threat of bombs decimating our home. We have plenty to eat when many are hungry. Our homes are heated in the winter and air conditioned in the summer. Travel anywhere in our country is incredibly easy on well-maintained highways.
For every negative experience, there is positive that can be learned from it. When I get hurt running, I understand it was likely a mistake that can be learned from to not repeat.
Recreation activities and sports often humble you. A positive attitude can overcome any challenges. Train your mind and your body will follow. Smile because you are fortunate to be alive and active. My happy demeanor deep into marathons often draws positive comments.
A positive attitude helps you believe you can. It activates your commitment, self-discipline and desire to do your best.
Only speak about the positive. Say “thank you” often. This will also be appreciated by those you associate with. Handwritten thank-you cards are especially appreciated.
Marathon running teaches you to be patient. Success happens step-by-step and takes a long time. Document your goals that are easier to achieve with a positive attitude.
A popular attitude test is the glass half-filled with water and you’re asked, “is it half-full or half-empty?” Supposedly a positive person says it’s half-full and a negative person considers it half-empty.
The glass is actually completely full, half with water and half with air. Last time I checked, and took a breath, air is awfully important. Best to be a full-full, positive attitude person!
Wayne Beyer is the retired director of Wahpeton Parks and Recreation.