Energy Flows Where Attention Goes

(Entry below was written a while ago, when I used to have to commute to work)

“Life is like a mirror, you get the best results when you smile at it”

I read this quote today on and it really struck me with its truth. Isn’t it true that when you are feeling moody and awful, that a bunch of things get in your way all day and make you feel worse? Or you find that people are especially mean and rude? I know that happens to me.

That’s why negative states of mind are so unhealthy and I try to avoid them as much as a I can. I do everything possible to try to lift my mood and feel better again. Because I know it will only yield bad things if I continue to be negative and hostile.

On those days when you feel great, confident, full of energy and happy, doesn’t the whole world and everyone you come into contact with respond to you with that same kind of positivity? It’s strange but what we expect is what usually happens, and if we expect people to be kind and open, if we project that outwards, then it usually comes back to us.

I think it’s harmful to harbor resentment, or to be so self-absorbed that other people completely annoy and bother you. Everyone is going through their own struggles in life, and I try to keep that in mind before getting annoyed with perfect strangers throughout my day.

The other day I became angry at a crossing guard who stops the traffic for people crossing the street to get to the train in the morning, just because he told me to smile. Actually he said (with a smile), ‘It’s ok, you can smile.’ There’s really no harm in that, in wanting to see someone else smiling, but I got so offended thinking that I shouldn’t be told to smile because I’m not a morning person. And part of my mind is still in my bed. But that attitude wasn’t going to be serving me at all. It would just be starting off my day on a negative note. And for what?

Just a day later and waking up happier, I realized there is no harm in smiling and saying good morning to someone, especially the first person you come in to contact with every day. Everyone likes to feel acknowledged because we are all human beings, and it doesn’t seem right to ignore someone crossing your path.

I like to wish kindness on my fellow commuters on the train in morning with this silent Buddhist kindness prayer (below), which I found on as well as in the book Happy for no reason. It was the most memorable part of the book to me (and I quickly committed it to memory), because it’s such a simple way to bring more happiness and peace into your heart.

I usually focus on one person at a time who is seated near me and pray:

May you be happy,
May you be healthy,
May you be at peace,
May you live with ease


January 3, 2013. Tags: , , . writing.

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