Adjust Your Attitude

The news has been so bleak this year — tragedy after tragedy. It can make you wish for a redo, a chance to go back to December 31st and live it all again with the foresight and strength to make everything better. But that only works in fiction. In real life, the gray cloud of angst and disaster seeps into your clothes, clings to you like dust, stays with you through the day, changing your mood, coloring the expressions you use.

Combine that with a laundry list of trite yet necessary end-of-year chores, plus deadlines, and it has the makings of emotional disaster.

So for today, I’m controlling what I can, even if it’s not what I’d like to be able to fix. I’m changing a simple expression “I have to” to “I get to” and changing my mood as well. It’s a simple thing, but it reminds me of how much I have to be grateful for in this life. I get to make a deadline, and get paid for doing work I love. I get to pick my kids up from school — a school that’s intact, with teachers who care for them – and take them to after-school activities. I get to walk the Slobbering Beast, who reminds me every day to find the joy in my steps.

What do you get to do today?

Don't forget to smell them.

Don’t forget to smell them.

Liz Michalski


  1. Jan O'Hara (Tartitude) on May 24, 2013 at 4:58 pm

    I’m coming very late, but this mindset is a crucial one for me to maintain, as you know. When I’m down in the dumps or simply in the mood to journal, I write a gratitude list of 10 things. It’s amazing how much I take for granted, how easy it is to become self-absorbed, complaint- or tragedy-oriented.

    • liz on May 28, 2013 at 5:58 pm

      I love the gratitude list, Jan. I often do mine at night when I’m trying to fall asleep — it reminds me as I’m drifting off of how lucky I am.

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