There’s an ad running on TV right now about people yelling, “Hey Camel, what day is it?” at camels at the zoo, much to the consternation of the camels who have heard the hump day line way too often. For too many of us Wednesday is “hump day”, meaning we have made it over the hump and more than half way through another dreary week. For those people the thought is, “Thank God, only two more days to endure until the weekend.” For them the glass is now more than half empty. These are usually people with a relatively pessimistic outlook on life.
For people who live their lives with a positive mental attitude, Wednesday isn’t hump day and they are thinking, “Thank God, I have two more days left this week to get things done and make a difference.” What kind of difference? Maybe it’s just finding another opportunity to greet someone with a smile and a cheery hello. Maybe there really is something that they can do for someone else that will make that person’s life easier or happier. Maybe it’s just their own lives that they are changing and they can use the next two days to make progress on those changes – maybe two more trips to the gym or attending two more classes or getting two more chances to continue reading the book that they bought. For these people the glass is half full and each day is greeted as an opportunity, not as something that one must get through somehow.
The most recent issue of Bloomberg Business Week opens with an article on the impact of the power of positive thinking on the economy. The article sites studies and concludes that positive thinkers get ahead more, get elected to office more, live longer and are way happier than people who are pessimists. Being a business oriented publication they even go into some of the positive business aspects of positive thinking, linking it to entrepreneurship and business success. There were even statistics at the macro level for entire nations that showed that the more happy and upbeat the population is the better the nation does in the competitive international economy.
So, which type person are you? Is today hump day and you’re resigned to having to slough through two more days at work before you get to have any fun on the weekend or do you see two more days of possibilities ahead of the weekend. And what about those weekends? Do the pluggers for whom Wednesday is hump day really enjoy those two weekend days the way that they think they will or do they turn out to be disappointing and wasted time, too? Many of them spend their time sitting in front of the TV watching sports shows and drinking beer; while the upbeat people are out playing sports or doing things with friends and family?
The good news is that you don’t have to be stuck in the pessimists’ rut. Short of a miraculous and spontaneous conversion to optimism, there are lots of things you can do turn your outlook on life around and start enjoying it more. You can start by changing what you initially look for in any situation. Rather than looking for the dangers or risks or downside to whatever you are contemplating, try looking for the positive results that will come about when everything goes right and then go make that happen. Don’t wait to say, “thank you”, to someone else for doing something kind for you; rather, pay it forward and do something kind for someone else, then you’ll be the one saying, “you’re welcome”, and it will make you feel great. Make this Wednesday the day that you get over the hump of pessimism and on your way to a better more positive life.