Most of the shadows of this life are caused by standing in our own sunshine.
~Ralph Waldo Emerson
Sometimes we’re our own worst enemy, aren’t we? Instead of looking at the positives in our lives, we dwell on the negatives…..or worse, wait around expecting something negative to happen. And then, we can point our fingers and cry, “See, I told you so!” Or, “It’s not my fault!” Or “Look what they did to me!”
So many times we have the uncanny ability of creating our own unhappiness. We’re so quick to take credit for the good happenings in our life, but are reluctant to share the responsibility when things go in the opposite direction.
We’re all responsible for our own attitudes…and behaviors. We are the only ones who can adjust that attitude and determine how we react to situations, circumstances and events. How much of our suffering is cause by the way we approach things? How much happier could we be if we would simply change the way we react?
Ahhh, there’s the rub. This mindset takes the blame for our unhappiness away from the other person, place or thing and puts it firmly in our own two hands.
I must admit, most of the time, my bad mood is a direct result of how I react to someone or something. Now, I know it’s not realistic to go around with a silly, Pollyanna grin on our faces all the time, but it’s really, really hard to look in the mirror and admit our own role in perpetuating the situation, isn’t it?
Sometimes it’s our pride that gets in the way of removing stumbling blocks. Sometimes it’s worry. Sometimes it’s insecurity. Sometimes it’s fear. Most of the time it’s something we don’t want to admit within ourselves. After all, it’s soooo much easier to think something or someone else is the cause of our angst.
Whatever it is, it’s up to us to find our own way out of the shadow and into the light. Because it’s in the shadows where we can’t really see our surroundings clearly. It’s in the shadows where we can’t be seen for what we really are. It’s in the shadows where we stumble and fall over otherwise beneficial pieces of furniture.
We need to be responsible and accountable for our decisions to either remain hidden in the shadows, or take steps to move into the sunshine.
Can you tell it’s Monday? And yes, my mood is a bit shadowy today. Methinks I should probably take my own advice.
16 thoughts on “Are you standing in your own sunshine?”
One of my favorite quotes! Your words ring ever so true. After I step out of my own way I am in a much better mood!
It’s amazing how well we can hinder our own happiness sometimes!
Wonderful insight to the quote. You could publish your own book with all the quotes and photos taken. I would be the first to buy! Love, love, love your thoughts, as always. My reaction to something or someone is definitely my worst enemy. I have some work to do!
Well, thank you Carol for such kind words! I think I’ll need to defer to Suziecate (see above) for the book idea! But maybe someday……… 🙂
There you go, expecting us to take responsibility. You are so right of course, but I fear taking responsibility for oneself is going the way of customer service. Sadness.
Yes, I agree. Customer service and putting someone else’s well-being before ours is becoming a thing of the past in many ways.
“We’re all responsible for our own attitudes…and behaviors. We are the only ones who can adjust that attitude and determine how we react to situations, circumstances and events.”
Loved that, Lisa!!! And you are spot on, girl! We might not always be able to change a situation immediately or even ever. But we CAN change our attitude by changing our perspective.
And for me, it’s usually that I need to focus on what I already have in my life to be grateful for. It’s amazing how when I focus on that, my focus on the circumstances change.
Fab post! Thank you!
You’re welcome Ron! And I agree that when we focus on the blessings in our lives, it really puts everything else into perspective. Thanks for stopping by again!
Perfect picture for the quote you chose, and how well you address how we do stand in our own shadow. It is sad and true that we or at least I do dwell on the bad experiences and have to remind myself that I’ve had so many great experiences also. Seems hard to flip that switch at times though. Very nicely put. Enjoyed reading.
Thanks for stopping by! I agree that flipping that attitude switch is awfully hard sometimes.
Isn’t that the truth. I think you are right about getting in our own way. Nice image and post today.
Thanks Kelly! It’s probably something we ALL struggle with from time to time.
What a powerful quote! Something to strive for, that’s for sure!
I love the low saturation of your photo and the placement of the words.
“The shadow proves the sunshine.” Jon Foreman
Hope you don’t mind that I responded with one of my favorite quotes.
Love the photo and the Emerson quote!
Absolutely don’t mind one bit! That is a fantastic quote. Thanks for stopping by.
That is is true about your quote and as usual I love reading your page. Cheers