Sometimes we lose sight of our present roses because we give our full attention to the one thorn in our side.
It's so easy to focus on the negative and to ignore the positive. We're human! It's a normal inclination to follow the path of least resistance.
Is it easier to sit on a couch, then it is to run a mile? Sure it is.
Whenever someone yells at us, is it easy to yell right back? You bet!
But that's not why we’re here on earth. Our purpose is not to give in to the roads most traveled by but to choose the roads less traveled by; for as Robert Frost would say, those roads make all the difference.
Have you ever had a negative thought that spawned into dozens of negative thoughts, resulting in an awful day?
I have. Maybe you have too?
Question: Why do we allow this to happen?
Answer: It's easier to wallow in the mire of sadness then it is to run in the sunshine of joy.
Now... Sure... It's easier to wallow in sadness, BUT the more we choose to be happy independent of our circumstances the easier it will become!
Ralph Waldo Emerson once said:
"That which we persist in doing becomes easier for us to do—not that the nature of the thing has changed, but that our power to do has increased.”
Being happy is an emotional muscle that must be exercised. If we do not choose to exercise our happiness, we will lose it.
One way I've found to obtain and retain happiness is to reflect on my past. I often do this as I am running one of my usual routes. This reflective moment normally occurs when I am having a tough time running up a hill or am finishing the last mile or two of a long run. During those times of distress, instead of wallowing in the mire of sadness (which will only increase my current pain) I will reflect on times at that exact spot in my route when I struggled even more then I am now. I think of how much I have grown, and how the Lord has transformed my mind over body connection. As I do this, my mind gains strength and focus, and I am able to once again take control of my body and silence the pain it wishes me to think about.
Too often we get caught up in one current failure that we lose sight of how much we've grown.
We get angry and distraught over one failed test that we forget we're smart enough to be in college.
We get sad and frustrated over one week of laziness and splurging that we ignore the fact we've already lost 20 lbs.
Don't be a prisoner of the moment. Shake of the chains of the present and look back at the beautiful landscape of your past.
You've come so far!
You've grown so much!
If you choose to remember the past in appropriate ways, I promise, you will find a more meaningful present and brighter future.