Here's an intention that could dramatically brighten your day — and life

Looking for life's positives can help you see the bright spots in your day.

Looking for life's positives can help you see the bright spots in your day.

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It’s easy to get caught up in a negative loop and overly focus on all the things that aren’t working, which, at least sometimes, can be a lot.

It’s the classic negativity bias. We laser in on the things we don’t like, obsess over them and complain (though we often consider it “venting”) to anyone who will listen. Then we wonder why we feel stuck.

I think it’s safe to say we all want to grow, thrive, and live as well as possible. If you’re reading this, that applies to you. But being locked in unconscious negativity thwarts that progress.

I often write about ways to break free of the mental blocks that hold us back. Today I have a suggestion that on its own could radically transform so much if we sincerely took it on. It’s simple: Set the intention to be on the persistent lookout for sources of love.

I know that sounds cheesy. But for real.

I mean “love” in a broad sense here. It’s the word I’m using because it represents our highest ideals. In this context, it’s not limited to affection or adoration. It’s a box for all the good, everything that’s positive, of the light, happy, heartwarming… good!

If we were to prioritize being ever on the lookout for love, we could rewire our brains and create powerful positive feedback loops.

Set the intention to look for love → notice more love = feel uplifted = notice even more love (+ attract it!) = greater resolve to look for love.

When I make it a point to do this, the first things that stand out to me are the more obvious ones: my daughter’s happy dance, my son’s garbled toddler-speak summaries of his favorite TV show, my marriage. This feels good, so then, I start noticing more good stuff … more of the little things. The auspicious string of green lights on my way to the coffee shop, the friendly cashier at the coffee shop … the coffee!

With love and gratitude front and center, I’m better to be around. This leads to more happy dances and eager "Octonauts" accounts. Sometimes my husband offers an unsolicited foot massage. Once or twice, that cashier has upgraded my latte.

When we look for love, we find it, and it finds us back. We open the doors for goodness and grace. Life brightens when we decide to consciously look for light throughout the day.

I invite you to give this a try.

Even if you’re going through a difficult time, still consider: What are the sources of love around you right now? Sure, negativity exists. Challenges are real. That doesn’t mean we should shortchange the good.

Let’s look for the light right now, and then over and over again. Let the brightness in.

Marci Izard Sharif is an author, yoga teacher, meditation facilitator and mother. In Feeling Matters, she writes about self-love, sharing self-care tools, stories and resources to know and be kind to yourself.