I read a quote yesterday that really did something for me. I usually read a quote, think it's good, and then move on, but this one empowered me toward application.
"All Negativity is caused by an accumulation of psychological time and denial of the present. Unease, anxiety, tension, stress, worry -- all forms of fear --are caused by too much future, and not enough presence. Guilt, regret, resentment, grievances, sadness, bitterness, and all forms of nonforgiveness are caused by too much past, and not enough presence.
I was in a good place when I heard this and feeling optimistic. A few minutes later, I was driving home, by myself. I had time to think without a two-year-old screaming, a five-year-old saying "Guess what?" or older kids mad at me for something I didn't get done. I had silence and time for just me.
It wasn't long before something from the past crept into my thoughts and I noticed immediately the change in my mood. It was such a contrast. I'd been hopeful and with one small thought, that hope was gone.
Instead of lingering on those stupid, negative thoughts, I told them to go away. They were past. Done. Finished. And I no longer needed them. Those worries were over, needed to be over, didn't help me in any way.
As I finished my drive, I focused on my senses to center me in the present moment, where I once again regained hope. The inside of my car was quiet. Occasional quiet for me, a mom of four girls, is a good thing and I began enjoying where I was. I was able to drive without feeling pain in my body, something that isn't always the case--another good thing. The mountains around me are beautiful--another great thing. The smell of the perfume my husband bought me a few years back still lingered on my shirt, reminding me that I'm loved. And the gum in my mouth reminded me that through the help of friends, I learned that chewing gum helps me to not be carsick anymore. So in that moment, everything was fine. Everything was good.
If I'd focused on that negative thought, my mood would have been so sour when I reached my destination. It was definitely an eye opening experience for me.