I strive to be a positive person. Like literally strive.
To exert much effort or energy.
Attempt by employing effort.
I am not a naturally a positive person. My inner running commentary would have you on the floor either laughing uncontrollably or holding your head, begging for it to stop. It’s a constant battle against myself and it’s exhausting. Over the years though I’ve developed a kind of statement and response mantra to combat this.
Inner me: You need to lose a few pounds.
Real me: You’re just fine. Keep working on being healthy.
Inner me: You’re alone and always will be.
Real me: And? Even if that’s true there’s so much life to live, I’ll be fine. Plus, I have friends and I’m still really young there’s plenty of time.
Inner me: You’re never going to actually matter in life.
Real me: Liar. I’m smart, I’m always working on myself, I have so many things ahead of me, and a heart to make things better in the world. So shh!
I’m sure I’m not the only one who has these conversations. Ugh.
The external conversations are exhausting too. I swear I find myself playing devil’s advocate a million times a day. I’m always trying to get people to understand each other and be more forgiving. Then, I listen to myself and want to crawl in hole. What’s with me? Did I honestly just say that? Why can’t I think the way I want to all the time? Yes, that person treated me like crap. Stop talking and think. What’s going on in their life? Why are they acting this way? How can you help them? Boundaries are a good thing, people shouldn’t be allowed to treat you badly, but then you join in on the gossip even as you’re cursing yourself for doing so? Pick one.
I’m striving to be this wonderful person. The person who can set a boundary and then not speak of it again. The person who can hear gossip and promote understanding without joining. The person who can have a conflict with another and not be torn to shreds when the other person is still mad in the end. Just because I can’t make them happy, doesn’t mean I failed. People pleasing isn’t helpful, I know that. Promoting understanding, level thinking, and at least a mite of positivity is helpful.
I’m not one to make resolutions. I prefer to acknowledge the fact that life is always a work in process. I’m never going to be finished. So, with the new year, my only goal is to keep fighting. I’ll fight the inner battles as I always have, maybe find a new weapon along the way. I’ll fight the outer battles with my ever strengthening patience muscles, and work on my self control while I’m at it. The only thing I’m going to add this year works in tandem with the outer battle. This year I’m going to try to help some people. I surround myself with positivity as a weapon against my inner battle. I’m going to try to help others with their inner battle and surround them with subtle positivity as well. I’m not sure how this will work, but it can’t hurt. I feel like if others could feel better inside, they might not make our shared outside space such a battle as well.
Inner me: Quit squeezing, your turnip is out!
Real me: They’re worth it and it’ll be worth the investment. Smart business, I promise.