Today we are going to talk about being positive. This is something that can be used both in bowling and in life. Here at Creating the Difference, we are always striving for growth. We do this through reading and/or listening to audiobooks as well as finding inspiring people to follow on social media.
One of the vlogs we follow recently did a video about realistic positivity. I think the "realistic" part there is what some people forget. No one has a life full of rainbows and sunshine. It's how we react to the thunderstorms and clouds which sets us apart. If you're standing in the middle of a burning room and thinking, "Well, at least I don't have turn on my heater," you're missing the realistic part. It's time to panic.
It's ok to acknowledge that negative things happen because they do and they will. You may have heard sayings like "Pressure creates diamonds" or "Fail forward." There are a ton of similar sayings but they all have the same idea. Your reaction to the hard times and negative experiences is what will define you. It can either be a trigger for growth or the top of a slope for more negative. The choice is yours. Keeping a realistically positive attitude can help to ensure it's the trigger for growth.
You Can Have Reasons or Results
When dealing with people, one of the most challenging things we see is the excuses. If you make a mistake, your boss/spouse/friend/child doesn't care why or how you made the mistake. Just own it and move it. If you're constantly making excuses for why you failed, you won't be able to achieve the goal. Instead of taking the time to come up with an excuse, why not use that time to do what you were supposed to do or come up with a plan for doing better next time? This goes hand in hand with the blame game. If you were responsible for a task and it didn't get done, it's not the computer's fault or your co-worker's fault. Take ownership. You'll find that people take your more seriously and you'll begin to see better results as well.
This one in particular can apply to bowling. If you're dwelling on missing your last shot or making excuses for why you didn't hit your mark, you're not concentrating on doing better for your next shot. But really, an extra practice session would probably help immensely. I see a lot of bowlers blaming the pins or the lanes when they should be blaming themselves for not practicing. You can have reasons OR results - you can't have both.
Your Reactions Define You
If you fly off the handle at the simplest sign of stress, people will remember you for that. On the contrary, if you strive to seek knowledge and understanding before reacting, you will likely have a more appropriate reaction. I'll give an example:
My mom's dog bit my daughter in the face. When many people hear that, they say things like oh my goodness! Did you have the dog put down? What a terrible animal!? etc. Some people ask questions instead. What happened? Is she ok? etc. The truth of the matter is that the dog was sleeping and my daughter jumped on her and startled her. My daughter is perfectly fine from the incident. She has a battle scar from it on her cheek but all is well. Had I flown off the handle and charged for the dog's punishment, it would have created a rift with my mom and created all sorts of unneeded drama. Instead, I listened to the whole story, consoled my daughter and let my mom handle the situation.
In no situation is it positive or useful to react without thinking through your actions. Think about the guy who kicks or punches the ball return. He's reacting without thinking. Do you think he would react that way if he realized how childish his actions look?
Put It All Together
In our daily lives things don't always go as expected. Some guy cuts you off in traffic, your co-worker is chosen for a promotion over you, you burn dinner...the list goes on. However, equally as many great things happen that we tend to take for granted. Green lights the whole way to work, hot coffee already brewed at the office, quality time with your friends or family. Take the time to acknowledge the good with the bad. Remain realistically positive - no one's life is perfect. The faster you accept that and stop pretending, the happier you'll be with your life. Stop playing the blame game and accept responsibility for your actions. Instead of thinking up excuses, think up ways to do better next time. And finally, seek wisdom before you react. Think through the consequences of your actions and people value your opinion more.
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