You know what it’s like when you’re in a darkened room and you flip on the light. It hurts your eyes, right? That’s because it’s too extreme from what you’re used to. The same goes for those times you’re feeling down and you try to “look on the bright side” too quickly. It’s too different; sometimes too difficult… and that makes it easier to just turn off the light.
Getting to the bright side takes time, and practice. It’s worth the effort, if you can be patient enough to gradually turn up the dimmers.
It’s going to take some time
Divers know to come to the surface slowly, to avoid “The Bends.” They know that the body needs time to adjust. The same goes for everything in your life. When you change you life, you actually have to adjust all the other parts of your life. Just by realizing that it’s a process, not a quick fix, will help you get through the whole thing a lot easier.
Not everything has to change at once
There’s no magic wand here, folks. No Fairy Godmother to just make everything perfect at the same time… so don’t try to be your own Magician either. One improvement, however small, is still an improvement. Go after what you can conquer easily and work your way through the rest later. It will actually get easier the more little fixes you take care of now.
Don’t avoid the dark times, get THROUGH them
Remember they say “the light at the end of the tunnel?” Well, that means you have to go through a tunnel. There are going to be setbacks and bad days… so what? Let them happen and then let them go. Thinking of setbacks as failures make them failures. Get back to the right track as soon as you can.
Get to Neutral
Things in motion tend to stay in motion. So stop. By staying still, you give yourself 360 degrees of choice from your standpoint. Getting to Neutral is also easier than getting to the bright side… it’s half the distance.
Get out of Neutral
Things which are at rest tend to stay at rest. So don’t stay in Neutral for too long. Enjoy the break, make a choice, then commit to that choice.
You actually have to WANT to be happy
If you want to look on the bright side, the choice has to be to “look at the bright side.” Think that things ARE going to turn out good; that all is right with your world and that tomorrow is going to be better because TODAY is making it better. It’s not a fantasy, it’s a way of thinking… and as you think, so do you act. It’s subtle and we don’t catch ourselves in the act of being positive or negative most of the time… but we sure feel the results. So just trust that thinking positively will bring about subtle positive changes.
Practice, practice, practice
If you haven’t been an optimist in a long time (or if you’ve never been) it takes a certain amount of practice to get good at it.
With enough time, practice and commitment you’ll get used to being on the bright side. Then when you look back at where you were you’ll see just how dark it really was before you turned the light on.