But they didn’t understand it
And I tried to make them see
That one is only poor
Only if they choose to be
Dolly Parton, A Coat of Many Colors
Make this the month of positivity. Because why not?!
What made me think of this is that I saw Dolly Parton perform at Red Rocks Amphitheatre last week. She is 70 years old, still touring and as sassy as ever. She shared many stories of her childhood during the concert. She grew up very poor in Eastern Tennessee. Her dad was illiterate and she was one of 11 siblings. The whole family lived in a one room cabin. Her story is inspiring. She came from very humble roots to become one of an elite group of individuals to receive at least one nomination from all four major annual American entertainment award organizations: Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and Tony. Pretty incredible.
As she spoke about leaving home at the age of 18 to pursue her dream of being a singer and songwriter, you couldn’t help but be impressed. She didn’t let her circumstances determine her future. She went after what she wanted and worked to make her dreams a reality.
Her quote from the song, A Coat of Many Colors, that ‘one is only poor only if they choose to be,’ made me think about what we choose.
Are we choosing to stay in a job that is slowly sucking the life out of us? Or a relationship that deep down we know is not right for us? Are we choosing a fitness routine that is no longer working? Or are we choosing to eat in a way that doesn’t support our health? Are we choosing to focus on the negative? The thing is it is all a choice.
I’ll be the first to admit that I struggled with this in the past – I stayed at jobs too long, in relationships too long, went down the negative road too often. Until I finally realized I was the one choosing these things and I could be the one to choose something different.
Choosing to focus on the positive or the negative takes the same amount of energy, so why not choose the positive?
It takes a bit of training to rewire the brain as unfortunately most of the media we see focuses on the negative. Choose to read the positive stories. Choose to turn off the news. Choose to find the good in everything. It might not come naturally, but it only takes a bit of attention.
When you are feeling down or some other negative emotion, shift your attention to something positive. Anything positive. ‘Wow, I have hot water to take showers in. Look at all the colorful flowers. I have great friends that support me in being the best version of myself. It is really nice to go on a walk in my neighborhood with no worries of gun shots or air strikes or attacks. As I walk, I notice the fruit trees in bloom, each house’s unique character, I feel the sun on my skin.’ And on and on. Noticing the good and acknowledging the good goes a long way in attracting more good to come into your life.
Today, ask yourself, “What am I choosing? Does what I’m choosing still serve me? If not, what can I choose instead?”
Then tell yourself, “Today, I choose to focus on all the positive aspects of my life and my surroundings that I can.”
Notice what happens. Notice how your energy changes. Pay attention to your interactions with others when you have this mindset.
Now commit to do it again and again and again. As many times a day as you can. It will absolutely improve your day and, over time, it will definitely change your life.
Send me a note on what you’re choosing today – I’d love to hear from you!
Sending you all of the positive energy in the world,