By Bill Evashwick
Contributor for Tools For A Great Life
Have you ever had one of those days when you wake up cranky and the events of the day seem to conspire to make you more irritated and angrier until you finally start looking for an excuse to blow up at someone or something? And yes, that was a rhetorical question, since we all have days like that.
I was mired in one the other day. Each new bit of news was worse than the last. I began looking for bad news and things to get angry about. And it was about the time I found myself looking at a hummingbird and muttering “What are you so damned happy about?” that I remembered a favorite quote from Abraham Lincoln.
“A man is about as happy as he makes up his mind to be.”
When you begin spiraling down into a dark emotional place, it is good to remember that you have a choice about how you feel. I’m not talking about denying feelings or repressing them. But there is a difference in acknowledging and expressing your feelings and wallowing in them.
If you are feeling unhappy, frustrated, angry, sad, or any other “negative” emotion, start peeling off the layers to find out what triggered it. Once you can identify the thought that began your downward spiral, you can change how you feel about it. Change your reaction to it. You can choose to be positive.
Then you can choose to take action. You might not be able to do anything to “fix” whatever the problem was. But any positive action, even something as simple as cleaning the house or washing your car will yield tangible results. You’ve done something that has improved your situation. You’ve accomplished something.
Choosing to be positive and take positive action creates a forward momentum that will carry you out of the doldrums and towards your goals. The choice is yours.
About Bill Evashwick
Bill Evashwick is an award-winning writer-director-producer whose work spans a wide variety of genres and media, from sketch comedies to documentaries, webisodes to feature films. His latest film, a quirky comedy titled Rancho D’Amour, won the 2011 Golden Reel Award at the Nevada Film Festival, was named Best Family Film at the ITN New York Film Festival, won awards for Best Actress and Best Supporting Performance at Film Fest Twain Harte, and was an Official Selection at the Great Lakes Film Festival. He has produced, directed and written television programs for ABC, NBC, FOX, Discovery, History, A&E and others that have resulted in an Emmy Nomination, 13 Telly Awards, six CINE Golden Eagles, two Gold Medals from the New York Festivals and a Cable Ace Nomination for Best Comedy Special.
Bill graduated with a degree in Philosophy, and when he’s not hanging around the Philosophers Union Hall (Local 827), he likes to hike, surf, sample craft brews and read pulp fiction.