365 Days of Living the Dale Carnegie Principles
Day 97. Friday, July 1, 2011
I was driving home from work—I was mentally drained. Half the staff took the day off today since it’s the Friday leading to the 4th of July weekend.
Those of us that had to work had a busy day. I had a marketing campaign to launch. Plus I had invoicing to complete and a variety of marketing projects to plan.
My commute is about 30 miles and I tend to think too much during that time. Several friends are on vacation. I haven’t taken a vacation in quite some time.
You can see where my thoughts were going….
I decided to focus on counting my blessings instead of my troubles. And to do this effectively I chose a random letter of the alphabet and tried to name off my traits, qualities and blessings that matched the letter.
Example: the letter “T”
I have tenacity.
Example: the letter “C”
I am good at making cookies.
I have courage.
A friend of mine said recently I was cute.
Example: the letter “D”
I am disciplined.
I can appreciate delicious food. (I am convinced not everyone does)
Example: the letter “S”
I made two shirts that my peers really liked.
Example: the letter “G”
I am the godparent to my friend’s baby boy.
You get the idea. While it seemed a bit childish or perhaps self-serving—it was a positive mental exercise. Coming up with words became an interesting puzzle to focus on during the very long commute. It also reminded me that no matter what I think—I am blessed and should be grateful for every gift no matter how insignificant.
By the time I made it home my entire outlook improved.
The Dale Carnegie principle I used today is from How to Stop Worrying and Start Living:
Count your blessings not your troubles.
My lesson to you—if you find yourself feeling down or disappointed about your circumstances or your station in life—take a very proactive approach to changing your outlook. Identify your blessings in a very specific way as I did. By doing this—you spend your time thinking about the positive rather than what you don’t have or your troubles. The outcome—you’ll feel a lot better.