Starting fresh

Michel de Montagne

So many of my friends sent me personal messages of encouragement and advice in response to my plea for help in setting my direction for the next year, it was very touching. A few of their comments are below. It seems that “positivity” isn’t just that; it’s connected to things like ‘noticing’ and ‘gratitude’. And it isn’t just one or the other, optimism or pessimism, there’s that thing called balance.

A: “It is hard to just “think more positively” without a how do you do that which then would lead me to agreeing with “noticing more” and yet I would take it one step farther to say what do you do when you notice? So my suggestion would be in order to practice thinking more positively, notice more and follow it up with uttering “thank you” or expressing gratitude for every little thing you notice that makes you stop and think. I have found the practice of Gratitude for the everyday events and persons crossing your path are the caveat to feeling more peaceful, joyful and dare I say positive about life.‎”

B: “I like A Year of Not Thinking.‎ Have you read ‘On Having No Head’ by Douglas Harding? No advice except to do the writing at same time every day without exception.

“Or to watch negative thoughts unjudgementally and see where they come from and where they go and just relegate them to your other thoughts and feelings and sensations and not give them any special role to influence actions and speech. And remember you can change how you feel in an instant. It doesn’t take longer.

“How to be positive in Hell is another title.

“Everyone thinks their own age is the worst in history but ours really is!

“Reading from others who have dealt with the same issue would be good I think of Montaigne’s essays as an example.”

‎C: “I think pessimisism can have much more depth and wit than optimism, but then you have to live without much joy. Somewhere there is balance.”

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