Let this coming year be better than all the others. Vow to do some of the things you’ve always wanted to do but couldn’t find the time.
Call up a forgotten friend. Drop an old grudge, and replace it with some pleasant memories. Share a funny story with someone whose sprits are dragging. A good laugh can be very good medicine.
Vow not to make a promise you don’t think you can keep. Pay a debt. Give a soft answer. Free yourself of envy and malice. Encourage some youth to do his or her best. Share your experience, and offer support. Young people need role models.
Make a genuine effort to stay in closer touch with family and good friends. Resolve to stop magnifying small problems and shooting from the hip. Words that you have to eat can be hard to digest.
Find the time to be kind and thoughtful. All of us have the same allotment: 24 hours a day. Give a compliment, not a complaint. It might give someone a badly needed lift.
Think things though. Forgive an injustice. Listen more. Be kind.
Apologize when you realize you are wrong. An apology never diminishes a person. It elevates him. Don’t blow your own horn. If you’ve done something praiseworthy, someone will notice eventually.
Try to understand a point of view which is different from your own. Few things are 100 percent one way or another. Examine the demands you make on others.
Lighten up. When you feel like blowing your top, ask yourself, “Will it matter in a week from today?” Can I see it from an airplane? Is this really the foxhole I want to dig and die over? Laugh the loudest when the joke is on you.
The sure way to have a friend is to be one. We are all connected by our humanity, and we need each other. Avoid malcontents and pessimists. They drag you down and contribute nothing.
Don’t discourage a beginner from trying something risky. Nothing ventured means nothing gained. Be optimistic. The can-do spirit is the fuel that makes things go.
Read something uplifting. Deep-six the trash. You won’t eat garbage – why put it in your head? Don’t abandon your old-fashioned principles. They never go out of style. When courage is needed, ask yourself, “If not me, who? If not now, when?” Then, do something…don’t just sit there.
Walk tall, and smile more. You’ll look 10 years younger. Don’t be afraid to say, “I love you because_______________________”. Say it again. They are the sweetest words in the world. Start using positive mental expressions regardless of how you may feel. How are you? should be answered with ‘Doin’ great and getting better‘ or the like. It’s amazing, the more you do it the better you will feel.
With heartfelt gratitude to Ann Landers for most of this
FOOD FOR THOUGHT