Mistakes are proof you’re trying!

Mistakes are proof you’re trying!

Don’t be afraid to mess up, because mistakes are proof you’re trying.

Persevere even when you’ve blundered left and right.

At least you’ve identified what doesn’t work.

Challenge yourself to find another option, regardless if you’ve cycled through everything you already know.

It’s the miscalculations that introduce innovation.

Mistakes do not define you.

Do we view Thomas Edison as a failure just because his invention of the Electric Pen, the Talking Doll, and the Home Projecting Kinetoscope (and more) didn’t work out the way he envisioned? Umm… nope!

Thomas Edison is known for his statement:

Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time.”

Don’t give up. It’s that simple.

Not easy, for sure. But simple.

Keep on going.

Continue tomorrow.

Try again.

And again.

“It always seems impossible until it’s done.”

Nelson Mandela

Nelson Mandela was criticized by some for being too eager to negotiate and reconcile with apartheid’s supporters… and by others for being a communist terrorist.

He didn’t give up, even in the face of criticism on all sides.

Don’t let someone else’s opinion stop you – their view is not yours!

Someone else’s opinion doesn’t need to impact your self-worth.

Keep on. Try something different. Big goals take many turns. The ones that are not sucessful may just lead to a new innovation.

Mistakes are proof you’re trying!

Your mistakes aren’t going to stop.

There’s every certainty that you’ll make more.

Who’s going to benefit if you stop trying?

It won’t be you!

“Never give up, for that is just the place and time that the tide will turn.”

―Harriet Beecher Stowe

That’s what you’re waiting for, right?

The place and time the tide will turn is just beyond your next mistake.

Keep going.

You’re trying.

Mistakes are proof you’re trying!

If you’re in that spot where analysis paralysis has hit, try these 10 statements to give yourself a boost, and if you’re worried about how long things are taking, read this!

Let’s make it a positive & thankful day!

Structure your Happiness – 100 days experiment.

Structure your Happiness – 100 days experiment.

Happiness is fleeting. In my life, the feeling of being happy shifts like the weather – the only surety is a change in and out and in again of happiness.

I’m imagining you might relate? It’s rare for anyone to be happy every day. (By-the-way, being joyful is a different story from the average happy moment. Read some thoughts about JOY here.)

Most of us merely want to have more happy days than we’re already experiencing.

Just like choosing to live in one part of the continent with more days of sunshine, than a different part of the continent with fewer sunny days, we do have the choice to structure our lives to experience more moments of happiness.

Is every day sunny? No. Will every moment be happy? Of course not. However, you can…

Structure your happiness – 100 days experiment!

Just so you know, I don’t think you need a special book, app or planner to take action toward structuring more happiness in your life. Purchasing something isn’t necessary. You could design your own map, print your own tracking pages, or just use a plain notebook to make notes.

The idea is to have a plan and then track progress over a period of time.

Happiness 100 days - plan to have more days of happiness.

I ordered the 100-day Happiness Planner for my birthday a few years ago. It was during a hard time. No tragedies – just life.

During this time I felt like I needed to take strong, decisive steps to structure my days to include opportunities to feel happy. I looked at many programs, considered creating one of my own, and then – for my needs – I decided to invest in the 100-day Happiness Planner.

This resource provided certain properties I needed:

  • a short period – 100 days is just over 3 months – to try new ways to structure my days/weeks and experiment with specific goals
  • no particular dates (undated) so I could write in my own dates and begin/end as I chose.
  • opportunity for reflection – questions and room to journal my thoughts
  • planning space for daily and weekly events
  • space to record thankfulness every day/week
  • a way to track what I was learning via Scripture and actively listening in church services
  • positive affirmations (although, I replaced some with God-honoring statements for the ones I didn’t like.)
  • and more – you can read about the 100 Day Happiness Planner here – I liked this resource so much that I became an affiliate.

This site, PostiveThanksLiving.com grew out of my time working in the 100-day Happiness Planner.

What do you need to structure happiness into your life?

More happy moments may not happen all by themselves. Sometimes we need a boost, a trigger, or a tool.

I hope this site, which grew from my time of reflection, can be a boost and trigger for your life. My goal is to provide positivity and gratitude prompts so we all have what we need to add some happiness into our life.

What other tools to structure happiness could you use?

Maybe you need to focus on adding some healthy boundaries to your life? This is a good book to learn how to do that.

Perhaps you feel it’s time to pursue deepening your marriage.

  • Rob and I talk about this book with couples all the time. It’s practical and easy to implement, no matter in what state your relationships exists.
  • Or maybe your marriage is just fine, but you need to do some planning as a couple – this is an excellent resource.

Have you ever done a “vision board”? In simple terms, it’s a collection of photos/images of what you’re working toward pasted or printed onto one paper. (I couldn’t find a resource to link to here, so I guess I’ll be creating one in the future!)

What other tools do you need?

Leave a comment – what has helped you find more happiness in your life in the past?

structure your happiness with the 100 days of happiness planner
Click here to explore this resource – but remember, it’s not necessary to buy this – you could do it on your own if you feel motivated…
structure your happiness - 100 days Happiness Planner
Have you made a list of those things which make you happy? Ranking items is a powerful way to make this idea real…
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Practice Realistic Optimism

Practice Realistic Optimism

Go ahead. When you’re practicing realistic optimism it’s part of the process to identify and acknowledge the constraints.

Because there will be obstacles and issues. Bad stuff happens. We have dilemmas and barriers.

Nothing is perfect. Ever.

But don’t stop there!

What you do after you’ve identified the constraints makes all the difference.

Realistic Optimism

Here’s a short video by Caroline Webb on realistic optimism – please invest a few minutes to watch it!

(If you can’t see the video player click HERE to go to YouTube)

Identify the Wriggle Room!

Caroline Webb, Economist, and former McKinsey partner says,

“Acknowledge the constraints, then identify the wriggle room within and around them…”

This process is what she calls realistic optimism.

What is the ideal?

What’s the first step toward to ideal?

  • where have you succeeded before – use that!
  • how and what have you learned from past endeavors that you could translate to this?
  • who could help you get a step toward your ideal?

Optimists (realistic optimists according to Caroline Webb) get into discovery mode once they’ve acknowledged the constraints…

In which area do you need to enter discovery mode?

In which areas could you get out of your fight or flight mode and into discovery? Where can you identify the constraints and move on toward the ideal situation? Leave a comment!

On a personal note, perhaps one of the reasons I found this interesting is because of my values. Rob and I have identified three shared values as a couple: Loyalty, Optimism, and Discovery. We use our values when we make decisions. If you’re interested, you can read more about this idea of shared values and our value of discovery HERE.

Sticky Positive Thoughts

Sticky Positive Thoughts

What sticks in your brain? Have you ever heard a melody and it kept going ’round and ’round in your head for the rest of the day (or night)? If you like the song, then that’s OK – but if you don’t… well, it can drive you batty!

And it’s the same with our thoughts. Sometimes the thoughts we think are helpful for our behavior, and sometimes they aren’t.

Wouldn’t it be good to have sticky positive thoughts going ’round our head rather than those stinky negative ones?

Sticky Positive Thoughts

Let’s get some sticky positive thoughts into our brains… Do any of these resonate with you?

  1. I’m loved and wanted.
  2. My time will come – I can be happy when others succeed.
  3. God supplies all my needs.
  4. I am able and capable. I can.
  5. If I fail, I’ll fail forward.
  6. Positivity is my first choice.
  7. I’m thankful for all things.
  8. I have a spirit of power, love and a sound mind.
  9. My goals are my focus – I don’t play the comparison game.
  10. If I’ve learned something then I’ve succeeded.
  11. Stopping to smell the roses is a joy in my life.
  12. When I give, I do it with my whole heart.
  13. Excellence is my calling.
  14. The peace of the Risen One abides with me.
  15. Challenges are opportunities to grow and improve.
  16. Feelings are not facts – I stop and think before I speak and act.
  17. I have all the time I need.
  18. Being organized is fun.
  19. I have hope for the future.
  20. I have great value.
  21. I’m thankful for now – I can see the joy in today.
  22. Prayer provides my strength.
  23. I invest in relationships by celebrating the little things.
  24. My waiting is never wasted.
  25. It’s OK to say “no”.

What do you say to yourself to think positive thoughts? Take a couple from the list above and write them down – put them in prominent places around your space to nudge you into optimisic thinking.

(I have three sentences on my night-table. They’re Scripture verses – ones that hold great meaning for me. They adjust my thinking when I find myself sliding into a negative spot.)

Find some sticky Positive Thoughts and nurture an optimistic outlook!

(It can’t hurt, can it?)

Optimism and  Achievement

Optimism and Achievement

Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement.

Nothing can be done without hope and confidence.

Helen Keller

What an insightful quote from an amazing woman! I think we all can agree that Helen Keller’s ability to achieve, regardless of the social era and her physical challenges, is startling.

  • she was the first blind and deaf person to earn a bachelors degree in 1904
  • authored 12 books, an autobiography, and numerous articles
  • the originator of a non-profit foundation and a prominent role in the American Foundation for the Blind
  • a political and social activist
  • world traveler and speaker – visiting and speaking in more than 35 countries
  • reading English, French, Greek, and Latin in braille
  • received the Presidential Medal of Freedom
  • and more… (including being friends with Alexander Graham Bell, Charlie Chaplin, and Mark Twain and meeting /conversing with 10 presidents.)

Just ponder these power words from her quote on optimism:

  • faith
  • achievement
  • hope
  • confidence

Helen Keller‘s life embodied these words! Read her biography and letters to understand more about her achievements.

Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement.

What do you need to do to feel a sense of achievement?

How’s your sense of hope?

What’s your confidence level on a scale of 1 to 10?

Optimism = the quality of being full of hope and emphasizing the good parts of a situation, or a belief that something good will happen.

Cambridge Dictionary

Find your optimism for what you need to achieve – and your hope and confidence will follow!

Achieving a goal.

I’m working on a goal. Am I confident I’ll achieve it? Hmm… I do hope so! Over the next 30 days (April 2019) I’m participating in a writing challenge and if I look at all Helen Keller achieved, I have no excuse whatsoever! So, I’ll adopt her attitude and begin.

Who inspires you?

Perhaps a mentor? Or a historical persona? Do you have people you’d like to emulate?

Leave a comment – let’s inspire each other!

Need more encouragement for achieving a goal? Below are few articles to prompt some optimism – click the links on the images.

Our view shapes our ability.

Our view shapes our ability.

Is it going to work out?

It depends:

Do you think it will?

Our view shapes our ability.


If you think you can do a thing or think you can’t do a thing, you’re right.

Henry Ford

I’m not suggesting everything is possible, or everything will happen the way you think it will…

It isn’t. It won’t.

But.

But, if you start with the belief it won’t work out… it probably won’t.

Why? (here are few ideas – I’m guessing you’ll catch my drift.)

  • you won’t keep trying after the first negative, because you’ll feel like you were right about the end result not working.
  • the level of energy you’d bring to the experience will be decidedly less than if you believed it would work out. Why put energy into something you don’t view as possible?
  • chances are, those who would help you… won’t… if you don’t believe it’ll work out. Why should they? All they can hear are your complaints and doubts, and see you giving up.

Optimism shows up to change the game!

This is where optimism shows up to change the game because it changes our view.

And our view shapes our ability. If we believe we can…

We move forward, even if we’ve failed before. We try again if we believe it’s possible.

Others hear us talking about our task succeeding – they see us trying again and again – they experience how we reach out and ask for help… and they’re much more likely to help us!

We renew our energy for the task – by being our own best friend and take care of our self.

Optimism is a tool. Use it!

Optimism doesn’t change the world – but if we USE it as a tool in our own life, then we’ll start seeing the world around us change.

Overwhelmed? Don’t know what to do next? Read this!