by Susan Coleman, Certified Maxwell Leadership Life Coach and Director of Volunteers and Community Outreach for Spotsylvania Regional Medical Center
The challenges of everyday life are unpredictable whether at work or play. Just when we think we are past one situation a tsunami can hit us, and we are thrown back even farther than we could ever imagine. That’s when opportunity knocks, and we have power to engage for better outcomes.
“You may not control all the events that happen to you, but you can decide not to be reduced by them.” – Maya Angelou
I love this quote by one of my favorite poets- an extraordinary woman and inspirational leader, Maya Angelou. The reality of the situation is we have a choice. We can go positive or negative. We can choose to become bigger than our problem or succumb to a place of defeat. In my journey to live a positive life, I’ve found the power lies within. The next destination is determined by the decisions I make today, (in the moment), for the long haul of life.
I’m sure you’ve been there, and we’ve seen others go through the storm.
One of the shocking challenges in my journey was a life-threatening health scare. I was totally blindsided when I received the call… “You have breast cancer.” A four word sentence I never want to hear repeated again.
As my world turned upside down, I tried desperately to muster the courage to look on the bright side of things every step of the way. What could possibly be positive about being diagnosed with cancer? For survival, I decided to make the disease my weapon instead of my weakness and dug deep into the battle to fight for my place to stay. A fight not just to survive, but to thrive along the way. A decision was made not only remove the cancerous tumor physically, but aggressively remove any negativity about my health outcome mentally.
There is no doubt that my attitude determined the latitude of the journey while going through. It was the conscious commitment to bloom where I was planted, in the midst of fear, of the unknown, and the ugly that gave me the power to fight. It got pretty ugly before I could see the season change, to finally experience a spring of flowers that were the direct result from decisions made day by day, and sometimes minute by minute.
Whether you are facing organizational work challenges or a personal tsunami, you can identify ways to help you find a positive mindset.
Marching into positivity for best outcomes:
- Acknowledge the problem.
- Allow yourself to grieve the problem, but don’t stay there.
- Confide in those closest to you, create a support team.
- Decide what your desired outcome is and don’t back down.
- Make a conscious decision to be positive and have positive people around you.
- Constantly remind yourself of the goals, put it in writing, sticky notes, journal, or create an action plan.
- Don’t give up. Have faith for something greater.
- Don’t be ashamed to ask for help.
There’s more to creating, developing, and maintaining a positive mindset. It is a life-long effort that requires constant attention. For organizations, there are team development and engagement strategies that have stood the test of time. We are all here for a reason, we have purpose and great value. The power of positivity is a way to help us get there!
Susan Coleman is a Certified Maxwell Leadership Life Coach and Director of Volunteers and Community Outreach for Spotsylvania Regional Medical Center.