ONE NIGHT I WAS getting ready for bed and
I felt disappointed in myself. It had been a busy day but I didn't
feel like I'd done much to advance my goals, and there were a
couple of things I did poorly. I didn't want to end the day like
that because I felt down, as if my efforts were futile. I hate
that feeling. It is so demotivating. Days like that I feel like
I'm spinning my wheels and going nowhere. I feel frustrated and
don't look forward to tomorrow.
Have you ever felt that way? Have you ever
wished you had a way to bring yourself out of it? Well, from
now on, you'll have something you can use. I invented a technique
that night and I've used it many times since, and it works every
time to raise my spirits and make me feel strong again, looking
forward to another day.
I asked myself, "What did I do today
that was right?" As soon as I asked it, I thought
of something. Earlier that day I was going to say something in
anger, but I held my tongue. "That was a good thing to do,"
I thought to myself. And I already felt better. I had done at
least one thing right.
But I didn't stop there. I asked it again.
What did I do right today? After only a minute's thought
or less, I thought of another one. There were three small items
on my desk I'd been needing to do and not getting around to,
and I got them done. I felt better still. The day wasn't a total
loss. Not at all. And even though I did a couple things poorly,
I had also done a couple things right, and this made me feel
I asked the question again a few more times
and went to sleep feeling relaxed and satisfied, looking forward
to a new day.
If this technique did nothing more than
make me feel better, it would be worthwhile. An improved mood
is a definite asset. But the question does something else that
may be even more valuable: It makes you look into your day to
see which actions you took were the most valuable. Each right
thing you do is something you do voluntarily you
have a choice in whether to do it or not.
By paying special attention to which were
the truly good choices, you clarify your goals and moral principles.
You clarify what you think is good. You clarify what you
want more of.
Ask yourself tonight: What did you
do today that helped you achieve your most important goals? What
did you do right today? Think of something. Enjoy it for
a moment, and then ask the question again. What else? And what
else? It's an excellent exercise to help you feel good more often
and increase your ability to accomplish your goals.
What did I do right today? What