You read that right; the best advice I have ever heard is from a Troll and is about cupcakes and rainbows. From the movie “Trolls” ‘Hey, I know it’s not all cupcakes and rainbows, but I’d rather go through life thinking it mostly is instead of being like you. You don’t sing. You don’t dance. You’re so gray all the time.’
I try to always have a positive attitude that I hope is contagious!
Eight years ago I woke up in the emergency room with no idea how I had gotten there or what had happened. I was told I had experienced a seizure. After multiple tests, medical procedures, a biopsy and several weeks’ time I was told I had an incurable, inoperable brain tumor. The first doctor I saw was all doom and gloom, very gray. He devastated me as he spoke of 5 and 10 year life expectancy statistics. My husband and I had two young children, and I had built a flourishing accounting business! I had much more to do on this earth! Thankfully, I was able to find a wonderful doctor who had more of a “cupcakes and rainbows” attitude – of course never making any promises, but always very positive.
I have been through five brain surgeries. One was an “awake biopsy” – nothing like being awake while they are poking around in your brain. The rest were “regular” craniotomies, as well as one for an infection. Though I can’t say I always had a smile on my face, I sure tried! I was very blessed that my family (husband, parents, sisters, aunts, uncles, grandparents) were there for me every step of the way, cheering me on, which helped me to stay as positive as possible through it all.
Some hints for positive thinking:
- Only use positive words when talking – this makes a huge difference! I find when others are speaking in a negative manner, using negative words, I start to feel negative myself.
- Sing! Dance! Exercise! Any activity you can do that will evoke feelings of positivity and happiness are wonderful for your positive attitude!
- One day, during tax season, which is extremely stressful and busy, I remember one of my employees telling me I wasn’t smiling as much lately. I was heartbroken! Life is too short to not smile every day. Thich Nhat Hahn wrote in “The Miracle of Mindfulness” to “Half smile when you first wake up in the morning. Hang a branch, any other sign, or even the word ‘smile’ on the celling or wall so that you see it right away when you open your eyes. This sign will serve as your reminder.” I programmed the alarm on my phone that wakes me up each morning with a message for me: “Rise, Shine, Smile and be Thankful.” This way these are the first words I see each day.
This is how I try to lead and treat my staff, family, and even my clients, with a positive attitude that I hope is contagious! Having a rough day? Things could always be worse and there is always something to be grateful for. Someone was nasty to you? Maybe they were having a bad day; it’s not necessarily a personal attack. Try to look on the bright side of things. Try to be thankful for everything and every moment, even when life gets tough. It’s much easier to handle a frustrated client, co-worker, or situation if you try to have this attitude. When I start feeling negative myself, for whatever reason, I remind myself of all of these tips! Don’t get me wrong, I don’t always succeed at taking my own advice, but it’s worth the try! And if I have a moment, or day, where I have not taken my own advice very well, I tell myself I will try again and try harder!
I love running my business and spending time with my family with an attitude of positivity and hope. I will never be considered “cured” or “in remission” with the type of cancer I have, but I am here enjoying every minute of each day and I will continue to focus on the cupcakes and rainbows in life and share that with others!
Watch your thoughts, they become words
Watch your words, they become actions
Watch your actions, they become habits
Watch your habits, they become your character
Watch your character, it becomes your destiny
Author – Unknown