A few months ago, I bumped into a friend and we got to talking about what makes for a good marriage. She and her husband (who happens to be a marriage counselor, so I knew she would have some insight into the subject), have been married for several years, and my husband and I are heading for our 39th year this September. I was surprised at how quickly she answered. It was as though she knew without a doubt of this profound approach to a happy marriage and was eager to share it with me. She said quite simply, "Always look for the good." I remember nodding in agreement, for I instantly knew what she meant. I had practiced this, (most often accidentally), over the years, but without giving it much thought. Since then, it's been on my mind constantly, not only in my marriage, but in dealing with everyone and everything in my life. It seems to be working, so I'm sharing with you and making it one of my new year's resolutions.
Here are a couple of examples on how "looking for the good" has helped me see things in a more positive light. Each night, at around 9:15 pm 'ish", my husband falls asleep in his favorite lounge chair. Now this happens to be "our time", when we watch a movie, or a favorite TV show, and I like to talk about our day. Typically, I would nudge him and try to wake him up. But one night, I tried to look for that good. I thought, "he works so hard all day and deserves this small break." And I thought how cute he looked with his glasses askew and hearing the light puffing noises he makes prior to an occasional snore. And then it happened . . . instead of frustration and anger, I was filled with love and warmth. I looked for the good and that's all I saw. It worked!
Here's the second example. While at Disney World last week on a family vacation, we found ourselves at the Magic Kingdom on Christmas day in the pouring rain, trying to find shelter along with THOUSANDS of others who also thought it would be a great idea to visit the Florida attraction on December 25th. Where indeed was the good in this situation? Instead of focusing on the frustration and discomfort, I thought how funny we looked in our yellow rain slickers, like a family of ducks. It made me smile and remember that we were building memories that we would certainly laugh at in the future.
I always look for the good when I seek out and interview guests on community TV and radio. There's a lot of good happening out there. So why shouldn't I do the same for those closest to me: my family, co-workers, neighbors, employers, etc. I think you know what I mean. It may sound simplistic, because it is!
Happy New Year!