There is one secret to "self-help" that I havent read in any book, and I've read my share of books. Do you know what it is?
The biggest step toward change is implementation. None of the principles, incites, or 12-step programs are going to do a lick of good if you don't put them to practice.
I'm reading 2 incredible books right now. Gretchen Rubin's "The Happiness Project" and Joseph Murphy's "The Power of Your Subconscious Mind". Both are motivational-change your perspective-books. . This whole, adopting a new outlook in order to have a happier home/mentally healthy mind, thing has been a long time coming, and I discovered both of these little gems at the same time. I'm not going to try to summarise either because I'm only about half way through each, but I am making a conscious choice to implement the key concepts: Take a moment and pause. If I change the way I think about/approach things, I can change my life. It's going to be a challenge, but with statements like: "Never finish a negative statement; reverse it immediately, and wonders will happen in your life." (The Power of Your Subconscious Mind pp.19)
Today was my first test.
Why did I get so irked with the Cowboy? He kindly offered to call the local sheriff's department to get me some information, and when we realised he did not ask all of the necessary questions, he even called them back. Yet by the time he conveyed the information to me, I was irritated that he didn't get all of the information the first time and spiraled downward into being completely annoyed that he is home sick, when he is not too sick to be at work, and hasn't done anything but play PS3 games all day; yet when I am sick, I still have to watch Monkey (because he wont dare be late for work in order to take her to school), get laundry done, vacuum, clean the kitchen, and make dinner for everyone.
How on earth did I go from a lovely lunchtime conversation and my husband doing something kind for me, to being so completely aggravated that I don't even want to talk to him? This is exactly the kind of thinking behavior I am trying to halt. No more negative, selfish thinking. No more, poor me, where is my gold star, I want some credit- recognition- or gratitude thinking. I do all of the things I do, for myself (truly.) No one else cares if the house is a mess or if I actually stay in bed (or on the couch) when I am sick. I just can not stand to waste an entire free day, sick or not, away from the office. Idle time does not bode well for me. So it is completely unfair of me to be irritated with my "sick" husband because he is still in his pajamas at noon-thirty. There are tons of things to get done, but he is home sick. He should be doing nothing but relaxing, playing video games and eating the left over pizza. And when I get home, there should be a whole pile of used tissues on the floor, remnants of what he's consumed today strung all over the kitchen, an unmade bed, and three teenagers and a six-year-old looking at me asking "What's for dinner."
And I'm going to smile and ask; "What would you like?"