Life is full of both joys and problems. When I focus my attention on the joys, the small good things that happen daily—the cheerful greeting, the person who waves me ahead in traffic, the extra effort a colleague makes—I’m happier. I smile more, laugh more, praise more, have more energy.

Yes, the irritations are there as well. But when I let them flow over, around, and through me, I am better and my days are better. When I dwell on the negatives, I become negative as well and my energy darkens and dissipates.

Like the farmer, I choose what I plant and I choose what I harvest. I find myself “harvesting joy” when I
– have an attitude of gratitude
– smile
– frequently count my blessings
– look for the best in everyone and everything
– assume the best of others
– walk on the sunny side of the street
– focus my energy on solutions, third alternatives, and the open door

And when I harvest joy, I find myself harvesting miracles, too, as blessings flow into my life and my ability to contribute to the blessings in the lives of others grows proportionately.

Closing quote:

“The longer I live, the more I realize the impact of attitude on life. Attitude is more important than the past, the education, the money, than circumstances, than failure, than successes, than what other people think or say or do. It is more important than appearance, giftedness or skill. Attitude will make or break a company… a church… a home. The remarkable thing is we have a choice every day regarding the attitude we will embrace for that day. We cannot change our past… we cannot change the fact that people will act in a certain way. We cannot change the inevitable. The only thing we can do is play on the one string we have, and that is our attitude. I am convinced that life is 10 percent what happens to me and 90 percent how I react to it. And so it is with you… we are in charge of our attitudes.” — Charles R. Swindoll, American writer, clergyman; b.1934