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The Sun Is Still Shining

How can we stay positive in a negative world?

I just cleaned out hundreds of unread emails from a personal account I forget to check very often. Over the years, that's the account that collected all the email from anything that required sign-up to get an account.

So, it was full of JC Penney ads, The Children's Place (even though my children are way past those sizes), products I bought one time, various new sites, and every other sort of solicitation.

Of hundreds, 5 were still relevant to me.

Even though I'm generally upbeat, I feel the drag on my spirit every time I read the headlines that are supposed to grab my attention to pull me into a negative spin.

Doom! Gloom! This group hates that group! Bad news! Storm clouds! We're all gonna' die! Be afraid!

I can't take much of that before I feel like I need a bath.

I'm not wanting to be naïve or purposefully uninformed. I just cannot wallow in the gloom.

So, I scan and watch. My mind is constantly decluttering the junk that wants to invade and reside in it.

How else can I actively battle the mind junk invasion?

  • Reading Scripture or listening to the audio on a phone app. This feels like a soothing wash of the mind. It puts the right thoughts in and serves as a filter to sift out the bad.

  • Being thankful. This is perhaps the most important way to lift up the mind. If you woke up today, that's a good starting point for thankfulness. Every breath is a gift from God.

  • Choosing the sunny side. Not in an idiotic way, just in a way that refuses to shuffle through the gutter with people who refuse to get out of it. There is so much good around us if we choose to see it. Bad things happen to everyone, and so do good things.

  • Serving others, whether it's your family at home, your neighbors, a random stranger, or the people you serve in your work. Selfish, entitled living always drags people into a negative mindset. But serving others will shift the focus off self and lift up everyone. It's all in the attitude.

  • Enjoying your senses. Can you hear? What pleasant sounds do you hear? Can you see? What is pretty around you? Can you taste? There's plenty that tastes good! Taking time to savor the world around us is part of a positive mindset.

  • Working hard. Occupied hands and mind don't have time for wallowing in the mire of negativity or getting into trouble. "The idle brain is the Devil's playground." (If you're around me long enough, you know I like quotes.)

  • Limiting news and social media. Too much of that will steal the joy out of anyone.

This surely isn't an exhaustive list, but it works for me, and I hope this helps someone else.


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