See those spent dandelions? That’s my front yard. Every day I return home from the gym and wonder when someone will mow down those darn things. Then I remembered how my children used to delight in dandelions. At first, they were simply a bright yellow reminder that the days were getting longer and warmer. Later, as the dandelion blooms turned to seed, we called them wishing flowers. We would look for the perfect puff and blow on it, believing that the spreading seeds carried our wish to the world.
The words and phrases we use can change how we experience life. When I see my front yard as a field of wishing flowers instead of a mess of weeds, I feel more content with my life. So today, I am going to keep track of my little judgments in my journal. Later today or early tomorrow, I will play with words and bless those judgments with positive or humorous labels. Weeds become wishing flowers. Stacked dirty dishes become the leaning tower of china.
Your turn: Make a list of four or five situations or things in your life that you are critical or judgmental about. Then rename them. Try to find a name that is positive, funny or even ironic. Sit with those names for a few days and monitor your mood: do the new terms shift your mood in any way?
And, if you’re willing, please share your old and new names here.