Surround Yourself with Positive People Who See Their Glass as Half-full
A glass that is half-full is capable of sharing, providing, and giving. Optimism is not only something that can put smiles on faces, but it is something that can make families healthier and stronger. It is imperative that families surround themselves with others who have glasses full enough to give to others, and they will find themselves with lives that are overflowing with positive support.
When it comes to difficult times in our lives, such as when loved ones are deployed overseas, the company we keep at home can be extremely influential, and not always in a good way. No matter which path we find ourselves on as siblings, parents, or friends of soldiers, we need to make sure that we are bringing people into our lives who can lift us up with their words and actions, and to whom we can provide the same sort of positive energy.
How to Know if Someone is Spilling Your Glass of Optimism
Military families need all of the support they can get. The trick is to make sure that they type of support is positive and optimistic. It is all too easy when there is instant access through media to a tragedy overseas to assume the worst for loved ones. If we surround ourselves with friends who tend to let emotions run high and get worked up easily, we can fall into those traps as well. These situations can suck the energy and common sense right out of us.
Look for these signs of relationships that spill your glass:
1. The first reaction is likely negative.
2. The person tends to jump to conclusions easily.
3. If you are concerned and go to this person with your concerns, she builds on those with her own worries.
4. When you have a positive experience, such as a phone call from your soldier, this person diminishes your joy, perhaps by complaining she hasn’t received her own, instead of sharing in your joy.
5. Your own sense of security, well-being, and peacefulness is not increased by this relationship.
Relationships that display these signs can make your efforts to lead a less stressful life while your soldier is serving overseas more difficult. These people can be in your life through personal contacts in your neighborhood, other family members, or even online forums. In order to combat the Negative Nelly in the crowd, keep your distance when there are extreme emotions, no matter if the emotions are sadness or elation. Seek the companionship of others who can help you find a positive balance and see things clearly for what they really are. When loved ones are serving overseas it can be too easy to jump on board with Negative Nelly when you are feeling down. Be careful to search for a more positive relationship so that you can keep afloat through turbulent times and rejoice in the good.
Photo credit: Kalyan
I remember, while either of my soldiers was deployed, wondering what they were doing. Like most of us, I used to look at my watch and figure out the time wherever they were. At the time, I wasn’t blogging – while our son was in Baghdad I was only up to emailing, hadn’t discovered the blogosphere. Anyway – I always wondered what he or his dad were doing (dad was in Bosnia). Weekends were harder, I didn’t have work/school to think about – ok, so I was avoiding homework! – and I kept hoping for calls.
How about you? How are you coping with wondering? Let us know, Let other parents know any good coping mechanisms!