February 22, 2010

I Need to Stay Motivated

I have been finding it quite difficult to manage my negative thoughts lately.
And my negative thoughts can seriously affect my mood and my overall quality of life.
Actually, I see things in black and white.
If I don't finish something perfectly (perfectionism!?), then I feel I am a complete "failure".
                                       
Sometimes I think that things in life are either nice or terrible.
I also think that since a single negative event occurred in the past that it will occur over and over again.
                                       
Apparently, I focus on one negative detail so intently that my whole outlook on the situation is completely negative.
I don't understand why I don't allow myself to enjoy positive feelings as I tell myself that a negative feeling (fear!?) is sure to follow.
Alas, I end up feeling bad about feeling good!

In fact, negative thoughts can be very powerful and things that normally would seem like no big deal can feel utterly overwhelming. 
But, we live in tough economic times and I think it's natural to feel overwhelmed during such tumultuous periods like these.
Coping with anxiety? Oh, yes!
I think, I know, I need to stay motivated.

I strongly believe that our attitude is something that we can control. I'm not quite there myself yet but I'm working on it. 
What I'm trying to say is that accepting the things I can't change or don't have control over and having the courage and stubbornness to change the things I can.
I sure hope, I sure know, I just found the answer!

Have you ever felt hopeless? Have you ever figured out that something prevent you from living life to the fullest? xx                

82 comments:

cook said...

καλή μου Μπέτυ
νομίζω είναι απολύτως ανθρώπινο να νοιώθεις έτσι...όλοι έχουμε περάσει από τέτοια τούνελ, άλλος περισσότερο, άλλος λιγότερο..στο παρελθόν βίωσα καταστάσεις που ήταν η πραγματοποίηση των χειρότερων φόβων μου...η πρώτη μου σκέψη ήταν...ανακούφιση...τελικά δεν είναι τόσο φοβερό όσο το φοβόμουν είπα...πώς τις ξεπέρασα...για μένα ήταν η πίστη μου στο Θεό...η προσευχή ήταν το οξυγόνο μου και η ανάσα μου...και ναι μετά κατάλαβα αυτό που τόσο συχνά λέμε...ό,τι δε σε σκοτώνει σε κάνει πιο δυνατό...αφέσου στους φόβους σου,όχι με το να σε κατακυριεύσουν, αλλά με το να επιτρέψεις στον εαυτό σου να τους βιώσει... έτσι και την ρίζα τους θα βρεις και τους κακούς δράκους θα νικήσεις...απλά πριν θα πρέπει να προνοήσεις να κρατάς
οπωσδήποτε το κατάλληλο...όπλο για τη μάχη που θα δώσεις...:0)
φιλιά!

3 hungry tummies said...

Nicely said! By being able to look at the bright side when times are tough and being able to criticized one self is already a step further from negativity. Go girl!
xxx

bonequinhoda bic said...

Yeah, all the time.
Thank you for giving us a piece of your mind.
I really enjoyed readind this,it shows a bit of your true carachter.
Big Kiss !

Lynette said...

I hope you stay focused and positive. It is so easy to allow negative thoughts to creep in and then you spiral down to despair.

xx

Caio Fernandes said...

i know how you feel .
i am this way sometimes too .
let's keep us up Betty .
positive positive positive !!
hugs !!

Lorenza said...

I think it happens, as a cycle in life, to go through these tough times and feelings. It is also true that you are "watching them" so you are aware of what is happening. Awareness is the first step to freedom. You don't like to feel negative but you are AWARE of it. Isn't it fantastic? The next step is to watch the feelings, no judgement, then let them go. Bubbles... pollution of the mind that can go. And you move on. It is not easy but you are able to make it successfully.

Lots of love & Rainbow

wenn said...

i always try to live life to the fullest!

Tami G said...

I have rough days from time to time too - that is why I started my Motivational Monday post... to try to get my week started on a positive note!
Go check out my post today!
Hope it makes you smile!

Tami G

Naqvee said...

I at times feel very low but you will get over this phase very soon! my post is opposite of yours. come over and read you will have something to divert your thoughts

5thsister said...

You negative? Never!

Even this post on negativity had a completely positive spin. That's why I love you!

Kristin said...

When I need to get pumped up, I put on the tunes...or look at my lil' dude. I do it all for him!

Sara @ Domestically Challenged said...

Very true. There is a book I read recently that gives good ideas on how to overcome these thoughts one step at a time, I recommend it: Switch: how to change when change is hard

good luck my dear!

Steven Anthony said...

we can controll our attitude, thanx for that reminder my friend, I needed it...

keep your chin up, give yourself a little slack, relax and breath...it will all be ok:)

Traci said...

Oh, I have so felt that way. It may just be the essence of humanity. The uncertainty of life. But it is from that uncertainty that possibility arises. Have faith. Faith in God. Faith in life. Faith in yourself. For in the end you are one with God and life and therefore you are full of infinite strength and opportunity.

I got a little heavy there but I mean it. You are so full of beauty and intelligence and grace that I know you are immensely capable. Choose today to trust yourself. That no matter what is around the next corner, you are big enough, strong enough, and full enough to survive it. And by the way, you are loved so you won't be alone.

All my love from Texas (and you know we do everything bigger in Texas!). I may need to hear these words in the near future. I am much better at giving good advice then living it -- τέτοια είναι ζωή! (I threw the Greek in for good measure, I hope I didn't massacre it!)

Love you!

RA said...

I think your present feelings are something most everybody goes through every now and again. That's life. Withour the downs we wouldn't recognize the ups when they tumble our way.
Music is not only universal, but also highly healing. Listen to music that you love and let it lift you up again. :)

Anything Fits a Naked Man said...

I feel that my lack of motivation is usually due to some inner fear that I'm procrastinating about. I don't get up and take the next required step towards my career because I'm afraid of failing.

I try to push away the negative thoughts and just push on ahead, but it's slow going, I admit!!

Lifebeginsat30ty said...

I used to feel this way and let it lead me down a negative spiral into depression. But I got help. And the best advice I got was that just because one thing in your life is negative, everything else doesn't have to be. To concentrate on the good things; create good things in your life. And it works! It's all about how we approach things. Good luck in finding your silver lining!

http://lifebeginsat30ty.blogspot.com

athina said...

Don't take the things so seriously!!As we hear,we live in tough economic period but if you look outside always there are people who have money to buy things from shops and restaurants are always full!From the time we have a good time,there is no special need to think about what bad happens in the life of people we don't know.

Secretia said...

I can't afford to live life at the fullest. But I do the most I can with what I have, and most of ot is spur of the moment stuff!

Betty Manousos:cutand-dry.blogspot.com said...

Anything Fits a Naked Man,
so glad to see you. I strongly believe that we can control our attidute. Sometimes it's natural to feel down.
I am not mental health provider but studies show that everything is possible.
Give your self credit for every step in the right direction, no matter how small.
As about Self Confidence:
The idea is to be your own cheerleader, be kind to yourself, and set up REASONABLE goals.
Once you have accomplished your first goal you will find your self-esteem and confidence are BOOSTED!!
Don't stop now. Set up your next goal. Set your self up for success. You CAN do it.
Betty xx

Shelley Ann said...

i totally know how you feel! i just had to go on a run because i was in a very bad mood. i think that just clearing your head for a little bit can help you feel more optimistic :)

Betty Manousos:cutand-dry.blogspot.com said...

Well, guys I didn't mean to make you feel blue or down in the dumps with this topic.
I just wanted to spread through the blogosphere the importance of staying motivated!
This is an optimistic post.

Thank you so much for your precious comments.
I absolutely love reading them!
xxx.

Rondell said...

Who is that in that pitcher? Is that Leon's kid?

Betty Manousos:cutand-dry.blogspot.com said...

Rondel, Welcome! he is an Indian musician, completely unknown.

Journaling Woman said...

Yes, I lost interest in Monday, just as I got out of bed. It didn't get better until I got home. :)

Nevine said...

Have I? Entirely. But what you say is also true, Betty. We hold the keys to freeing ourselves from the negativity that often afflicts us. The important thing is for us to allow ourselves to think clearly, and objectively, and then we can sort through the junk. Very interesting post, Betty!

Nevine

Vodka Logic said...

I wish I had more motivation.. just don't have it a lot of times. Things get done but thats it.

You get an answer let me know.

Christopher said...

Being positive seriously feels like a full time job at times. You're right, the tough times don't help either. Everyone in the world just needs a break. We're way too stressed.

Momma Fargo said...

I have felt that way a time or two myself. Betty, you are great! Don't lose your motivation. And from one perfectionist to another...you are still awesome even if everything is not perfect!

Richard @ The Bewildered Brit said...

I completely agree. If we let the world overwhelm us, we get crushed; we have to keep on moving and working to make things better and get where we want to!

Christiejolu said...

I have been trying so hard to not focus on negative things. It is a hard habit to break. I am trying though!

Unknown Mami said...

Yes, I've felt that way many times. Perfectionism is a pain in the butt and it gets in the way of joy. You are awesome. I hope the funk passes quickly and stays away.

Michael Rivers said...

I feel the same way sometimes. I'm kind of in a rut right now with certain things. Hopefully it doesn't last!

Four Seasons in a Life said...

Dear Betty,

I can understand having walked a similar path trough the valley of grey and dark clouds. Of course it does not help that winter is sticking around for several more weeks.

I hope that soon there will be sunshine in your life soon.

Warmest regards,
Egmont

Sarah Swift said...

Looking for the positive in everything good and bad is what helps me maintain a positive attitude (which I so am not good at)

Try meditation!

That is what I do to keep in synch with my feelings.

Being Me said...

I agree and I agree and I agree ... .. most definitely..

would be nice to have those re-fueling stops for positive energy..

:)

cheers
Helen

ΕΛΕΝΑ said...

Εαν σε παρηγορεί, δεν είσαι η μόνη που νοιώθει έτσι!
Νομιζω οι περισσότεροι άνθρωποι έχουν βιώσει ανάλογα συναισθήματα κατά καιρούς ή εξακολουθούν να βιώνουν.
Μόνος του ο καθένας τα παλεύει και μόνος του τελικά τα νικάει.
Καλή και αισιόδοξη μέρα εύχομαι:))

MissNeira said...

I agree with this 100%
this is a great post lovely!



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Just Playin' said...

I think we all feel that way sometimes in the ebb and flow of life. You will work through it.

Jennifer Fabulous said...

I can relate to this post a lot. The past year has been such a struggle for me. In January, I had a friend commit suicide and then I lost my job. Now I'm dealing with two very close friends who are overcoming nightmarish personal issues and then I can't seem to find a new job. It's like the negativity never ends.

And lately I've let it overcome me and bad things keep happening.

Your words are so true. I think our lives change with our attitudes and I need a huge attitude readjustment. I need to stop being depressed and angry about my life and start seeing it with a little hope. Then maybe things will start to look up...

Maybe. :)

Great post, as always.

Oh, and before I forget, I wanted to let you know I gave you an award on my blog. :)

Erika said...

ditto. Best of luck staying motivated!

RAQUEL CRUSOÉ said...

Excellent your blog, congratulations!

Thank you for being together. You are worth gold, and this special moment, has a gift for you on our blog. I hope you enjoy.

Regards,

Raquel

http://raquelcrusoe.blogspot.com/

Ted said...

Very awesome post! I love it!
:)

Georgia said...

I like your thoughts. I 've been through this. I know how it feels and I need to readjust my attidute.
Thank you.

North West London Girl said...

Hello, I think most of us, from time to time, go through periods of self doubt, low self esteem and fear and it is natural. I have found it harder and harder recently to pick myself up from these moods. For us Brits it may be that the weather has been rubbish here (worst in 30 years) and all is doom and gloom. However I have seen crocuses peeking through so I know good times are on the way, and I send you happy and positive thoughts xxxx

flying eagle woman said...

you're so right my friend...as Eleanor Roosevelt said "no one can make you feel bad without your permission"

you're a wise woman and the picture is SO amazing!
Shawna

ritsa said...

We all have our bad times. Well said! We can control ourselves if we try hard.

sonia said...

Awesome post!. Thanks for sharing your thoughts with us.

PJ said...

I have found out that steering myself to have a "Gratitude Attitude" helps me focus on what I have, what I can do, what is going right. I keep repeating the phrase: Gratitude Attitude ...

Emm said...

Oh dear! I felt that way for many years and then strangely, a sense of peace came over me. I still get blue moods and days but for the most part I am far happier and more content than I ever was.

Perhaps it is the season - late winter? I don't just mean the time of year but sometimes in my life I have absolutely know that it was a time for change and that the springtime of my life was around the corner.

I'm sending positive vibes to you!

Farila said...

I agree with you Betty.. Our lives are mostly carved out by the knife called attitude ...

The Blonde Duck said...

All the time. The important thing is to keep your chin up and believe in yourself!

Sarah RDH said...

I used to have those times too, but I tell myself now that getting upset doesn't change anything. Just roll with the punches.

Boomka said...

So when I first looked at that picture of the violin player I thought he was coming out of his violin case, and then I thought he was a cardboard cutout, and then I realized... wow, maybe I just need to get my eyes checked. But look at it this way, at least you are not that voilin player! Who knows how many times a day people think he is cardboard, and yet he keeps on playing. Yes, he is the beacon of optimism we all need. Play on violin man! (he is real, right?)

Kitty Moore said...

I can completely relate to everything you wrote (in fact I could have written it myself!). I struggle to keep negativity at bay and every time something good happens I think it inevitable that something bad will follow. I plough through each day feeling like I am fighting against an invisible force of negativity. Not much help really am I?!

Love the photo, beautifully framed and the musician looks very elegant and dignified-I think he is how 'positivity' looks.

Kitty x

Corrie Howe said...

It helped me to "let go" of perfection and what others think about me...this helped a lot with my anxiety and unhappiness.

Average Terran said...

This truly is inspirational! Well done!

Naturedigital said...

You have a unique way to express your thoughts and feelings Betty..
Believe me.. before I started reading this post of yours.. when i first saw the photograph of the lonely musician posted with it, i felt that loneliness...
.. We all have our up and down moments... and believe me.. they are so difficult to fight and start feeling positively again..
It looks like one bad thought.. leads to another and soon you start feeling the cold bony hand tightening on your heart.. squeezing it..
.. Believe me.. I have felt it also.. and not just once.... it passes.. and there is a moment of bright sunshine to dissolve the darkness and bring warmth again...
.. Try to think positively..
Costas...

Lacie @ Creative Attempts said...

First of all Happy sits day and second this was such a great post for me to read I have the hardest time pulling myself out of my day and not getting too focused on all the unimportant details

Angelia Sims said...

For me, sometimes it just seems easier to give up. Why even try? Just walk away. But then I grasp on to every touch of grace bestowed on my life. Undeserving but loved with mercy, handled and guided with sweet care. I can't help myself. I keep going for all I'm worth.

This is a great post. Thought provoking and inspiring.

Karen, author of "My Funny Dad, Harry" said...

Keeping my focus on God helps me overcome negativity. If I'm in a bad mood, all I have to do is start singing praises to God and it changes my whole outlook.

Congrats on your SITS day!

Annie @ astonesthrowfrominsanity said...

I agree. If you let it, the negativity will sometimes just overtake and encompass you. I find if I just get it out (vent) then I usually can let it go! But, music would probably be a much nicer may to mitigate it! :)

Herself said...

I read that the brain, as it sends it's lightening fast signals, sort of creates little "channels" to travel on. I call them "brain Grooves" The more we repeat an action or thought, the deeper the little grooves become until it's difficult to get out of the ditch! Hence old habit die hard. The good news? we can make new, wonderful brain grooves! It takes effort but every time we think a positive thought instead of a negative one, the little avenue becomes a clearer path for our minds to travel!

Melissa @ Cellulite Investigation said...

I'm reading an awesome book right now by my favorite psychologist, Dr. Elaine Aron (she previously wrote a series of books about High Sensitivity, a trait 20% of the population shares). Her latest book is called The Undervalued Self. She explains how a trained psychotherapist helps people work out these kinds of problems through a technique called active imagination, where you actually write out a conversation with your "inner critic." Have you ever tried anything like that? As you can tell, I'm so intrigued by this stuff!

Life with Kaishon said...

I just relate to you so much on this post. I try to be happy and positive, but sometimes the sadness overwhelms me!

Laura said...

I've always been an optimistic person, the "glass is half full", and I think I actually irritate some of my friends & family because of that, but it's something I don't plan on changing. (Being a single mom, I do get a bit stressed over money - or the lack of).

Happy SITS Day!

Teresha@Marlie and Me said...

Happy SITS Day Betty! I know I have been here in awhile...Marlie has been keeping me VERY busy. I had to come by and say congrats on your SITS day...so proud of you!

Marie said...

Yep there I days I feel like that too, but then in that moment I say "is everything okay right now and right here in this moment?" And 99.9% of the time they are, so I just try and stay in that vibe.....No use looking to the future and wondering, and no use worrying either.

scrapwordsmom said...

I have so felt this way before. I think we all have. And like you...that is one of my reasons for writing my blog. It gives me great joy...all this connecting with others. Learning and growing.

Happy SITS DAY!!!:)

Sabreena said...

Happy SITS! It is amazing the power of thought. Once you go down that negative road it seems to be a slippery slope. It should be easy to take control of your thoughts and therefore your destiny but sometimes it is impossible. I am trying to change my outlook on things so that my days go better and it is a long road but at least I am trying. Nice post.

Aleta said...

My husband says that I'm more negative than he is. It's because I worry, but secretly, inside... I'm wishing and hoping for the best. We're both listening to an audio book called "Secrets" - it's excellent and discusses sending out positive vibes to the universe and it will return those vibes back to you.

Heather said...

Sometimes being able to look on the bright side of the things is so difficult, but I try to remember I would rather be around people who are upbeat, so I assume other people do too.

Heidi Walker said...

Happy SITS day.

I make a conscious effort to treat myself well. I have discovered that when I give myself a pep talk and acknowledge just how great I actually am that I only get better.

Start with saying nice things to yourself once a day and try to add a new one each day.

Positive things happen when you pay attention to the positive energy in life.

Tiffany said...

Congrats on your SITS day! Great post.

The Grasshoppa:Triplets Plus Two Momma said...

I believe in the power of thought as well...I just don't believe we always "HAVE" the power over our thoughts.

And certainly not our feelings.

If we are honest about them, they are what they are.

I guess the key is recognizing that we don't always have to allow our thoughts and feelings to impact our ACTIONS.

We need a plan and perhaps an agreement with ourselves that we will do our best to stick with the plan/vision that we set for ourselves regardless of those thoughts and feelings that tend to get in our way.

Still a tall order! I know I rarely do. I'm a hot emotional mess!

kailani said...

I know how hard life can be sometimes but I do try to see the positive since I know things could always be worse. I hope you "stay motivated"!
Happy SITS day!

Joann Mannix said...

Happy SITS day. Lately, I feel like I've been in a slump, like the winter dole-drums were getting the best of me. Exercise helps for me and staying connected whether that be through the blog world or the "real world". The beautiful sunshine finally showing its glorious face here in Florida helps, too.

Extraordinary picture.

Christa Terry said...

I can so sympathize! Especially with regard to perfectionism and projects. I don't know if you've read The Neverending Story, but I sometimes think I'll never move forward if I don't finish all the half-done projects laying around. But I can't "finish" properly since I don't trust that they'll be perfect! Ack!

Christie@MommyDrinksBecauseYouCry said...

Happy SITS day! Once again congratulations! That photo is very deep. I feel lonely looking at it. Hopeless. I agree with you that attitude can be everything but...Sometimes pills to help. When it becomes impossible to stop the negative thoughts, they help. A positive outlook is hard to have sometimes but I do agree most of the time it is within our grap.

Eve said...

I'm lucky, I suppose, that I rarely feel that way, but just recently I did. It lasted for several weeks... and I had the most difficult time shaking it!

But it all passes. And there are so many wonderful things to enjoy about life, so once I pulled myself out of the slump, I felt fine again. ;)

Erin said...

This post is at the heart of CBT (cognitive behavioral therapy). You are observing your cognitions - your negative thought patterns such as black or white thinking - that is wonderful! First step - learn to identify and label your negative thoughts. Next step - learn to stop them. Then - learn to replace them with non-depressed thinking.

Enjoy your SITS day! It has been a lot of fun to see a fellow non-mommy blogger on SITS :)

Best of luck with your goals - I look forward to following your adventure!

Sarah With Scissors said...

Controlling our thoughts is tough, but not letting our negatives overwhelm us is important. I don't know that I'd call myself an optimist but I do my best to learn to find the up side in every situation... even if it's just to laugh at your own situation.