“Let’s go play cards tonight, should be fun!”.
“Yes, I’m looking forward to being with friends!”
As the evening begins it seems everyone’s enjoying themselves until one person finds a reason to talk about every ache and pain. Next thing you know, everyone chimes in sharing how bad they feel and what new ailment requiring a doctor visit. All it took was one complaint to turn a fun evening into everyone sharing their problems, stalling or even halts the fun.
It’s easy to dwell on what ails us.
Like a game of chess, we try and one-up each other to see who is worse off than someone else. Why is it so easy? It’s one way we can relate to each other. Although sharing our health issues helps us connect, it’s easy to go from sharing to complaining to having a negative attitude and outlook on our situation.
It takes effort to have a positive outlook but when you do, it can make the difference as you spend time with friends and family. A hopeful, upbeat attitude attracts positive people and friends. Not only that, it helps you in building a healthier lifestyle, resulting in more joyful moments in life.
Exactly what does this mean in our Golden Years?
Research shows the benefits of having a good attitude in life. An optimistic outlook could help in lowering inflammation, blood pressure as well as other benefits.
It can also endear relationships in community, neighbors, and family, helping us to continue living with purpose. Happiness is a choice. It is not something that comes automatically to us, we have to intentionally choose joy or happiness every day. each day.
We can also keep a good sense of humor. As we mature, life is accompanied by a lot of changes with our bodies and our relationships, but that doesn’t mean we have to take life so seriously.
Taking time to look at situations and laugh reduces stress and gives you a more positive outlook. As Bette Davis said, “Old age ain’t no place for sissies” and Oscar Wilde put it this way, “Life is too important to be taken seriously”.
Gratitude is another way you can improve and brighten your attitude.
Each day think of three things you are grateful for, write them down, choose one for focus on for that day. Other ways you can practice gratefulness is to make a phone call to someone in need or write a note to let a friend know you are the thinking about them.
Planning time for friends and family to come for a visit or make plans yourself to take a trip or visit the local museum is another way to be thankful for the things around you.
Keeping a humorous outlook, choosing to be happy, practicing being grateful can all contribute to changing our mindset to be more positive and in turn helps our relationships with friends and family be encouraging and enjoyable.
So the next time you are playing cards or sitting around the table with family or friends, instead of complaining about what hurts or who you don’t see anymore, focus on having a positive attitude and encouraging those around you. You will feel better and they will too.