It’s easy to sing the praises of something or someone when you’re feeling good, but continuing to notice praiseworthy things in your life when times are tough, that’s a bit harder.

Ever have one of those days when despite your best efforts not to criticize or complain, that seems to be all that comes out of your mouth? Today was that kind of day for me. Thankfully my favorite line delivered by Thumper in the Disney movie, Bambi kept ringing in my head. “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all.”

Facing challenges to my commitment to make a positive change in my life, in this case to focus on the praiseworthy rather than to be critical, is nothing new for me. I’m a creature of habit and I find it easier to stay stuck with the status quo rather than move out of my comfort zone into a new way of being.

I bet you’ve experienced it, too. You decide you want to start a new diet, be friendlier to your annoying co-worker or carve out a few minutes of quiet time for yourself each day and WHAM! just when you’re on a good roll, the very worst in you rises up to make things difficult.

I call this the Illusion–that force that pops up to challenge you just when you’ve taken action toward living your positive new plan. Next time it happens to you, take it as a sign to double down on your efforts. No matter how tough it is to stay the course in the moment, remind yourself that this challenge to your resolve is just a temporary roadblock. Once you go over it, through it or around it, you’ll be stronger and well on your way to creating the positive change you’re wanting in your life.

Today I give praise for life’s challenges for it is in the overcoming of them that we are made strong.

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