If you’ve been following me on Twitter and on Facebook, you may have noticed that lately I’ve been posting a lot about positivity. Truth is, I was a skeptic. It was hard for me to be positive when I was at the lowest point in my life – no job, no love life and my health was failing. It wasn’t the most ideal place to start being positive.
But then I met this guy (No, not like that.) who was a motivational speaker and a trainer. He was the guest speaker for a show I was hosting. He started talking about positivity and it just hit me like a 10 wheeler truck without any brakes. PJ Lanot said “Life is not about the external circumstances you are in. It’s about the internal response to these external circumstances that make your life.” He said that happiness and being positive is a choice and that I can be happy but I really have to choose it. So I tried it. There was nothing else to lose and it wouldn’t do any more harm to try, right?
PJ said to focus on gratitude. He asked me to focus on what’s going RIGHT in my life and not what’s going wrong. Sure, I don’t have a job but that doesn’t mean that I couldn’t find a new one. Perhaps now was the right time for me to focus on what I am good at and maybe even turn it into a business. I may have lost my love but I still have people who love me – my family, my children and my friends. Love wasn’t in short supply, it’s just a different form of love. I wasn’t at the best health but I wasn’t terminal – I can still make up for the weight I’ve lost and now that I’m no longer part of a company, I can actually sleep properly! My being jobless meant that now I can spend more time with the kids while I’m looking for a new way to earn income. It was a bad situation to be in but it wasn’t the worst and it was not the end of the world.
Day by day, the changes were happening. I was feeling better and more optimistic about the future. My appetite returned, my sleeping schedule was returning to normal and I started to become more grateful to all the things I took for granted. I felt happy and I wanted to share that happiness! I found myself saying “Thank you” to the bus drivers when I get on and off the bus, much to their surprise. I looked at the guards at the malls in the eyes and said “Good Morning!” or “Good Afternoon!” and thanked them. I tried to help strangers with small things such as reaching for an item that was too high for them (parang ang tangkad ko di ba? Effort pa rin ang lola!) or whatever needed to be done at that time. I was singing while I was walking, I had a bounce in my step and suddenly, I felt like the world was literally my playground.
One of the most tangible experiences I had was just last Sunday. The family had lunch at Seafood Island, a restaurant known for its boodle feasts. We were all very hungry and I literally shoveled food on my plate and after two bites, I noticed that one of my rice grains was moving on its own…and had eyes. It was a small worm usually found in organic vegetables. I had a handful of rice midway that was almost in my mouth and decided to put it in anyway, gutom na talaga ako eh. I calmly picked up my plate and showed the waitress the moving grain of rice and she immediately took my plate away. The manager went to our table after a few minutes and apologized profusely. I smiled at him and said “I’m not upset at that. I’m actually glad I saw that because that means that the veggies were proven to be organic. What I’m upset about is the fact that my plate was taken away and that it really took a while for me to make my sawsawan just right. May I have a new plate, please?” I smiled at him again and he was taken aback (and so was my mother and everyone else at the table.). He gave me a new plate, doted on our table and even gave us free desserts!
The manager thanked us again and said that if I were any other customer, I would’ve already made a scene. I shrugged my shoulder and said “I’ve eaten worms before. More protein for me! Like I said, this proved that your vegetables are organic. I’d rather have that than to have dangerous pesticides and chemicals in my body.” I winked and smiled at him. He was again so pleasantly surprised that he even made sure that we were all taken to the door and they waved goodbye to us.
I’m pretty sure that if and when I go back to that restaurant again (which I most definitely will, now that I know they do have organic vegetables) the staff would treat me nicely and I would have another wonderful experience. Had I thrown one of my epic tantrums, it would’ve ruined the whole experience for everyone. My mother would be upset, the kids would feel upset and awkward and the staff would probably try to avoid us as much as possible – thus ruining a Sunday family lunch. A moment’s tantrum was not worth several people’s day ruined.
There’s no mumbo-jumbo to it, no magic tricks and no promises. You work for it and you make a commitment but the benefits and the results are worth it.