Word Salad

By: Peggy Willms

(4 min read) 

Which set of examples are you?

The weather sucks, the traffic is horrific, and I hate my job OR…would you look at the weather, traffic, and your job in the following way?

“The sun come out tomorrow. Bet your bottom dollar that tomorrow…” 

“I leave the house 30 minutes early every day to avoid rush hour.”

“I have lost passion at work. I am going to start looking for something else.”

Could you use only positive words or references for the next two days? What if you were hit upside the head with a rubber chicken or were tasered every time you were negative or couldn’t find the bright side of things? I’d stand in line for hours to see that.

Years ago, my sons were talking with me in the kitchen and the oldest one decided to call it a night and headed up the stairs to bed. My youngest just kept talking to him unaware he had pulled an Elvis and left the building. He talked and talked and talked until his brother hollered from the top of the stairs, “Stop eating word salad.” I about spit my water out. Word salad? I hadn’t heard of such a thing. It is a reference to someone spewing a bunch of words that are intelligible and confusing. It was hilarious. 

Negative Word Salad~the only food negative people eat. #gets old #blahblahblah #minimalvocabulary #ugh

It takes 10 positives to squash out one negative. On any given day, how many positives would you have to come up with to wash out all of your negatives for that day? I gave three negative remarks at the beginning of this blog. I flipped the “thoughts” a bit in the three sentences following. Which approaches do you resonate with the most? I am sure you don’t want to spend the rest of the day trying to come up with dozens of positives to wipe out 11 negative words. Eleven words that can ultimately kick off a yucky day for you and those around you. #ugh #gross

I believe complaining or being negative is a learned behavior. I also believe if you are a negative person,  the people around you have enabled you to continue being that way. Those people who complain about you complaining, are a handful as well. Are you called out for your negativity or pessimism? What if you only had three strikes to complain about the same thing, and then you were out? Like out. “Don’t call me, don’t write, don’t come over.” #blocked  

If you had to choose either the word pessimist, optimist, or realist to stamp on your forehead, which one would it be? What if your ear was branded every time you were a Negative Nelly? How many tags would you have accumulated over the years? What if you were fired from work when you hit a complaint allotment for the day?

I love the thought of publicly humiliating chronic complainers or those who use too many thumbs-down emojis. We would certainly know whom to avoid. Or what if we put all the whiners on a deserted island and let them devour each other for lunch? #brilliant #hungry

If you were paid according to your attitude could you make the rent this month? Negative people should live in down-ridden parts of town, have no health insurance, experience only cloudy days, and only eat saltines. Let the bombs blast outside their tents every minute of the day. #sorrynotsorry #notasloudasyourmouth

I know I am getting a bit dramatic. But truly, I just don’t have time for the crappy stuff anymore. Maybe it is because I am getting older, and I know what I want out of life. I am not suggesting you fake it until you make it, slide down rainbows, or earn an Emmy every day. We all have bad days and suppressing feelings is not what I am talking about. I am asking you to assess, rewire, and circle back every single day…assess, rewire, assess, rewire repeatedly until you get your act together.

I am also sick of wiping my bleeding ears because of the constant churning of the T-o-o’s. It is too hot. I am too tired. Traffic is too congested. The bed is too soft…the bed is too hard. I am too sore. OMG. #IamTOOtiredoflisteningtoyournonsense

I have worked diligently to be associated with positive adjectives. When someone mentions my name, I want them to think about these salad words passionate and positive. “Good vibes, chica! Love your energy.” My epitaph would read  “She lived passionately and positively.” Oh, except I do not want to be buried or have a headstone. I want my cremated dust to ride off into the sunset with the ebb and flow of the ocean. I want to chase the waves of water skiers and chat with mermaids. Sprinkle me in the ocean blue, sons. Dolphins and mermaids don’t whine!

I am not perfect. My language is not perfect. My emotions and reactions are not perfect. However, I can tell you I feel a lot better when I am more positive than not AND the people around me appreciate it. Oh, and I am healthier. If you are a dark cloud looming around and can’t see the positive train coming through the tunnel, then sorry I just can’t do you, Boo.

We cannot appreciate the sun if we don’t have rain. We cannot appreciate the brilliant stars of the dark night if we do not recognize the blessing of daylight. I shall pat myself on the back. “Peggy, if you hadn’t experienced the negatives of the world, and pushed to find the good, you would be one lonely girl.”

I challenge you to play along. Over the next few days, write down any negative feelings, thoughts, words, or behaviors you have. You might fill a notebook. If you do, think about the brighter side. You now have several areas of improvement written before you. #howexciting. If not, there is a boat leaving for Grumpy Island at 8 AM. #bonvoyage.

Peggy Willms
                                                                     All Things Wellness, LLC
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