What’s your plan? 08/14/2019

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Half empty; half full? Thirsty would most likely be the ultimate preoccupation this phrase would elicit in the eclectic minds of those I affectionately label the Arens Girls. Most of us have probably heard it completed with the word glass. The proverbial phrase helps to capture a person’s mindset; indicating thoughts toward optimism or pessimism. We could tend to believe that the glass half empty refers to an attitude of always thinking or believing the bad or worst in things and the glass half full indicating the opposite end and good deals. Reuters has reported that optimists live longer and healthier lives.

There is something to be said about optimism has an important coping mechanism. Changes in optimism are not related to changes in negative affect and can be stated that it appears therefore that optimism is uniquely related to positive affect. Winston Churchill explored the question this way, “A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.” Entrepreneurs will say they like this. Optimists are generally happier with their lives than pessimists (https://www.pursuit-of-happiness.org/science-of- happiness/ positive-thinking/ ).

The quickest way to grow your optimism is to be thankful. I have heard it put, “Develop an attitude of gratitude.” There are two little words you can utter often to gain entry onto the path and venture down the road to being thankful. Little yes, but maybe some of the biggest words ever spoken; THANK YOU. Gordan B. Hinckley reminds us that perhaps these two mean more than all other words (Way to Be!, 2002 ). It is easiest for me when I think of where I come from. Family, friends, and country are included in this musing. I have been blessed to travel and one much occasion was ten days at a 5-star, beach front resort in Cancun. Just three blocks up from the waves I witnessed families living in cardboard boxes. I am grateful to call the United States of America home.

Saying thank you will get you branded as polite and educated. It will also allow you to stand out; how many times a day do you hear thank you? Hinckley says to be thankful for blessings, opportunities, parents, friends (we can be difficult to be around at times), teachers (school is starting), and to those that do you a favor. Draw some attention to yourself? Be different; say thank you!

Saying thank you will start you toward creating a solid foundation of gratitude. Gratitude builds a positive mindset and gets your glass half full. This makes for a better attitude and more happiness. Maybe take a step back when the urge to verbally wail on someone presents itself in your doings. You could be the wailee (not likely to make the list of new words this year). My wife has promised to help me remember that there are those having an even worst day when I’m freeway driving. Develop gratitude and be happy my friends.

You’ll live longer.

Thank you for following me! ■

— Scott Arens is a lifelong resident of Arbuckle. To contact Scott email scott@arenscp.com