A phrase to change attitudes

Written by Fred Ogden (MRSB)
Former International Science Educator; Biologist; Some-time Preacher & Speaker; All-time Thinker; and Eclectic Storyteller

You’re probably familiar with the above half-glass graphic-representation of the two contrasting approaches to ‘life’.

It can be tiresome if you are on the receiving end of such advice, especially if you are really ‘down-in-the-dumps’ and being told ‘how to live your life better’. It can be hurtful.

Ever heard this funny story?

Three men went into an English pub: An Irishman; an Englishman; and a Yankee. They ordered their favourite drinks: Guinness, Beer, and Whiskey on the Rye.

Sitting at a pub table, they chatted. The Englishman, regarding himself as some sort of philosopher and a realist, tried to lead the discussion towards the topic of optimism & pessimism.

Once the discussion was well underway, he introduced the classic phrase: ‘half-full, half-empty’ and he placed his now half-empty beer glass onto the edge of the table to use it as a visual backdrop to the discussion.

Another man, sitting on a nearby table listening to the discussion ‘saw’ the three as Realist, Optimist, and Pessimist.

After the three men had been arguing for quite a while, they noticed that the glass of beer was empty, and a beer-stained note had been left under it:

The above pub-story serves as an introduction to my real story: ‘How a New Aussie Phrase Can Help Change Attitudes’

A new Aussie phrase? What could that phrase be?

Here’s a personal experience that explains it:

“I’m Good” is a common Australian response to the question: “How are you today?” You hear it a lot.
One day I wasn’t feeling too great, and a passing friend said: “Hi Fred, how ’ya goin?”. I responded by honestly saying: “Not so good”. The brain of my friend obviously expected the usual “I’m Good” response, and that’s what he must have thought he heard, because he then said to me: “That’s Good”.

Since then, thinking about this ‘built-in deafness’ to my “I’m not-so-Good” response to the “How are you?” question, I invented a new (extended) response to the question “How are you?” so that I no longer replied “I’m Good” as expected. I added a bit more:

I coined a new phrase in the hope that it would be heard, and that it might create a really positive response in the mind of the enquirer.

My newly coined expanded response-phrase is:

“I’m good, in fact, I’m gooder than good!”

I thought that it might create a sense of “hey, this guy is really feeling good”, and that perhaps it might also lift the spirit of the enquirer.

My initial intention was simply to help the listener actually hear, rather than ‘assume’ my response, but when I used it, I got two unexpected outcomes:

Using the phrase made me feel better! Wow! and

The other person’s spirits seemed to be lifted too! Wow x2!!I had created a classic win-win situation!
My newly coined phrase became an instant pick-me-up for two people at least. What if each of us, now feeling really good, went on our way with a positive attitude? Could this newly generated positivity be self-replicating?

Had I started a shower of positivity-replication?

Of course, when you’re not feeling particularly blessed, it isn’t easy to change; it isn’t easy to turn around negative thoughts is it?

How are you doing with your life? Are you blessing it or are you cursing it?

When negative thoughts come, what image do you project to your friends and your loved ones? Are you projecting negativity? Why not try to turn negative thoughts around by saying:

“I’m good, in fact, I’m gooder than good!”

Maybe say it to yourself first; then try it on others.

Say this whenever you hear that internal voice of negativity. Begin to encourage yourself, and others will begin to encourage you.

One thing’s for sure: If you give up, you’ll never get there. If you only listen to the internal voice of negativity, you’ll only be “Living … just living”. Negativity leads to failure!

Can we challenge the impossible; turn things around; put positivity at the forefront of our thinking, and say:

“I’m Good, in fact, I’m Gooder than Good”