The way we choose to live our lives, to a great extent, boils down to how we view our predicaments.  The fact is that just about everything can be seen in a negative light if you choose to do so – owning a Mercedes Benz can only be uplifting if we don’t start bitching about the fact that we rather have a Rolls-Royce instead; living in a District 21 leasehold private condominium can only be gratifying if we don’t envy our peers who own freehold bungalows in more upmarket precincts.  The proverbial glass full and glass empty analogy applies itself in this instance more so than ever.

Life is all about the choices we make.  If we adopt the right attitude to things, situations will not always appear as bad as it seems.  As we embark on the journey of life, we can choose to enjoy the ride or hate every bit of the trip.

This reminds me of the story of Jerry.  Every time someone asks him how he was, he would reply, “If I were any better, I would be twins!”  When asked about how he could be so positive about things, he will cheerfully share with you about the deliberate choices he makes, from the time he wakes up till the time he hits the sack.  This includes choosing to be in a good mood rather than bad; and whenever a bad situation rears its ugly head, he will tell you that he constantly chooses to learn from it rather than be a victim of the circumstance.

Jerry is a manager of a restaurant.  The story goes on to relate about how, in a moment of carelessness, Jerry was shot by robbers who were out to pilfer his takings, leaving him to die.  However, as he was attended to, Jerry’s positive attitude prevailed and he chose to live instead off accepting impending death.  He did this by encouraging the medical team and telling them, in no ambiguous way, to operate on him with an attitude of wanting to save him, rather than to submit to the grim symptoms they were faced with.  As you would have it, Jerry survived.

Consider this – the next time before you complain about something, think of someone who could be in a lesser situation than what you are currently going through.  And then choose not to lash out with your tongue, but to look on the brighter side of things.  For example, before you say something unkind, think of someone who can’t speak.  Or before you complain about the food, think of the starving in the world today.  Or before you complain about your job and the intense stresses you have to bear, think about the unemployed and the disabled.

The next time you have the urge to complain about how uncontrollable your children are, think about those who are barren.  Appreciate your spouse rather than criticise him or her, for there are many out there who crave for a companion but have not been fortunate enough to be blessed with one.

Be thankful that you are alive and well!  Shake off that negative streak if you are one of those who have been accustomed to seeing the glass as always half empty.  Complain less, smile more, and let us all pitch in to become a nation of Jerrys.

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