Sunny side up

One of the easiest things in life is to focus on negatives. There are those of us who naturally have a 'cup half full' attitude to life and others who just as naturally have a 'cup half empty' view-point.  We all differ in this regard and may be optimists in certain areas of our lives and pessimists in others. For example, someone who has always done well at work may perpetually have a positive attitude to their work and how it will be in the future; the same person may feel pessimistic about their couple relationship due to previous negative experiences with ex-partners.

We are all influenced by our past experiences and sometimes have to work hard in order to put these negative experiences behind us to prevent anticipating a repeat.  Negative expectation brings about the negative.  For example a person who believes that they are not good enough to be in relationship with their partner could quite easily, over a period of time, make this a self-fulfilling prophecy so that their partner no longer wants to be with them.

Henry Ford of the Ford motorcar summed up this phenomenon in just a few words - 'whether you think you can or think you can't - you are right'.
A negative out-look can make the worst occur.  Whilst looking on the bright side and hoping for the best can bring about positive outcomes.

Understandably, couples I see often come to counselling concentrating on the negatives in their partners.  They arrive entrenched in the difficulties of their relationship.  They have arrived at an impasse.  Part of my role is to facilitate the understanding of the present situation; help to examine the historic journey to this point; explore the realistic options available and help to ascertain if there is enough mutual appreciation to begin to find an 'adjusted' way forwards.

Reviewing what you like about each other can be a simple way of resetting the dials on the way you think about your partner - by shining a light on the positives things can start to look a lot brighter.

Turn your face to the sun and the shadows will fall behind you - Maori proverb