Attitudes are contagious.
Attitude is everything.
These are familiar sayings. But do we always know how to change our attitude?
A few decades ago, it became common practice for many employers to place motivational posters around the office. Their purpose was to sow seeds of positive thinking and remind employees that they can change their attitude by changing their thinking.
What about at home and in your marriage? Do you have motivational reminders strategically placed in your home?
A great way to create an environment of positive thinking in your marriage is to embrace the value of optimism.
The Value of Optimism
As a value, Optimism means a general disposition to expect the best in all things.
The key phrase here is to expect the best.
What are your expectations of your marriage and of yourself? What do you think your spouse expects of you? Are these the best? If not, can they be better?
It’s not surprising that Norman Vincent Peale’s book “The Power of Positive Thinking” became a bestseller. It’s a terrific guide on self-esteem and success. We all need practical help in mastering the problems of everyday living – including marriage.
A great quote from Peale is: “Change your thoughts and change your world.” Positive thinking in life – and our marriage – is a choice. And we alone make that choice.
So what choices are you making for your marriage? How can you incorporate the value of optimism?
Optimism in Marriage
Some couples seem to be naturally optimistic. Thankfully, Lori and I are like this. In fact, Optimism is one of our differentiating values (Loyalty and Discovery are our other two values).
But regardless of your natural disposition to optimism, it requires continual encouragement and development to remain active and alive.
Here are 6 ways to encourage and develop optimism in your marriage:
- Live it. If you are a positive person at work or with friends, don’t change your behavior when you come home. Regardless of how your spouse is feeling or behaving, let them see you living with optimism. Lead by example.
- Talk about it. In the same way Norman Vincent Peale encourages us to change our thoughts, focus your conversations with your spouse on optimistic subjects. This engages both the mind and heart to be optimistic.
- Share it. When you read or hear an optimistic story or quote, share it with your spouse. This includes sharing virtually through such mediums as Facebook, Twitter, email or even text.
- Pray for it. A great Bible quote is “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened for you.” (Matthew 7:7) This is wonderful encouragement to simply ask God for optimism to be alive in your marriage.
- Reflect on it. Another great quote is “There are people right now who are happy with half of what you have.” An attitude of gratitude promotes optimism.
- Believe in it. Recalibrate your beliefs to embrace the concept of unlimited abundance. No need to fight for your share of the pie. The pie is made bigger through optimism. You will never run out.
A new common phrase is “You get what you envision and believe.” So what are you envisioning for your marriage? What do you believe is possible?
What other ways can you keep optimism alive in your marriage?
How can the value of optimism benefit your marriage?
Today’s value was selected from the “Diversity-Flexibility” category, based on the e-book Developing Your Differentiating Value.