Positive vs Negative - The Dollar Stretcher
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Positive vs Negative

Today we begin a new goal for the month of November - working on being thankful. We selected that goal for a reason. When we're looking for a reason to be thankful we're looking for things that are good. We're focused on the positive. Not the negative. So no matter how you feel right now, spend some time today looking for something that you're glad exists in your world. You'll be a happier person for it.

Finding something to be thankful for tends to focus our mind on the positive. Why is that good? Because the mind cannot hold two opposing thoughts at the same time. One after another, yes. But at the same time, no. So if you're positively thankful, you cannot be negative for that moment. And, sometimes, especially when we're feeling low, to escape from the negativity even for a few moments is a real relief.

What methods do you use to find items to be thankful for? Why not share them with us?

This post originally appeared in Financial Independence. FI is a daily message designed to help people take control of their financial lives. To find out more check out the Financial Independence page.



Cheryl said:

This is a great question! I love the ones that make us think!

At first I wasn't sure what method I use, until I realized how much time I spend thinking about the lives of the people affected by my favorite charitable organizations.  The first is Samaritan's Purse. Franklin Graham set this up. What we do is fill shoeboxes every fall and take them to a local Baptist church, where they're picked up and taken to children in the US as well as underdeveloped countries, that are in poverty. They're loaded with toys, candy, etc.  The second org is St. Jude's Children's Research Hospital. Every month I spend some time thinking about the short and painful lives of those children, and the agony their parents go through, and I feel even more grateful for not only my house, car, etc, but also my health, my ability to walk, to sit up without pain, etc. There are many things in my life I'm grateful for, but thinking about the method I  use to find them was a real eye opener. That's the only method I can think of right now.. thinking about the children at St Jude's and the receipients of the shoeboxes. I would love to read others comments on this. Brilliant question!

November 3, 2009 7:07 PM

Anne Cross said:

Whenever I notice myself having anxious or negative thoughts, I start making gratitude lists. I go through the alphabet and list something or someone that I'm grateful for that starts with each letter of the alphabet. I find it changes my mood dramatically.

Sometimes if I'm stuck in a line and feeling a little cranky, I'll look around and try to find things that start with the letters LINE or LOVE that I am grateful for. Sometimes "L" is the line I'm stuck in, giving me time to realize how much there is to be grateful for.

Right now, I'm grateful for the topic! Thanks, Gary.

November 4, 2009 12:47 PM

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About Gary

For more than 25 years, Gary Foreman has worked to manage money effectively. Prior to starting The Dollar Stretcher, he was a financial planner and purchasing manager. While helping clients manage their hard earned money as a financial planner, he applied commonsense, time-tested techniques during the turbulent 1980’s. The experience convinced him that you didn’t need to hit the lottery to accumulate significant wealth. Following that, Gary had an opportunity to learn more about how to get the best value for a dollar spent in the corporate world. As the Purchasing Manager for a computer manufacturer, he was responsible for supervising over $10 million in annual purchases. Gary began The Dollar Stretcher website <www.TheDollarStretcher.com> and newsletters in April 1996. Over 300,000 readers benefit from the time and money saving ideas presented in The Dollar Stretcher newsletters each week. His mission is to help people "Live Better for Less". He also provides private label newsletters for companies wishing to provide money saving information for their clients and/or prospects. Gary lives in Florida along with his wife of thirty years and their two children. Much of his time is spent working with the men's ministry of his church. One of their ongoing projects is the "Holy Smoke BBQ" which sells bbq on Friday nights with the profits going to support local foster kids and orphans. When he has a free moment you’ll find him restoring a Checker station wagon nicknamed “Two Ton” or cruising in a '65 Impala SS Convertible with doo-wops playing in the background.

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Gary is a former financial planner and purchasing manager who edits The Dollar Stretcher website <www.stretcher.com> and newsletters. You can follow Gary on Twitter.com/gary_foreman
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