Abundant Optimism

Helping people regain and keep an optimistic outlook in challenging circumstances and improve their creativity, mind, and skills.

A Positive Autumn

by Tamara Martfeld

One of the best ways to be more positive and optimistic is to find the good things about something frequently seen as negative.

Every year I hear people complain about Autumn. They have to rake the leaves. They have to make sure the house is sealed against leaks from the rain. They have to clean out the gutters. They have to pay for heat in the home. They canít figure out what to wear because it is very warm one day and downright cold the next day (at least in Sacramento, California where I live). There are some rainy days. Autumn means Winter will come very soon. Etcetera, etcetera, etcetera.

What about all the positives of the season?

I enjoy the varied colors of those leaves everyone complains about raking. This year the colors are extremely vibrant in our area. There are deep reds, neon oranges, grass greens and forest greens, flaming yellows, majestic purples, and rustic browns. My favorite tree in town has all the colors and looks like it was used as the painterís palate for the rest of the trees. In our area we have many trees which are evergreens and serve to offset the vibrant colors of the other trees. What a beautiful decoration for the season! Other than taking a broom to sweep the leaves from walk areas for safety, I leave Mother Natureís decorations in place for as long as possible.

As for sealing the house from the rain, realize that when this is done it is also sealing the house from air leaks which can raise utility bills and/or make the home less comfortable. Sealing any leaks helps year-round and a positive aspect of this is that money is being saved. In other words, Autumn is forcing you to do something which helps you.

Gutters help protect the home and yard from water damage. There is a significant amount of dirt in the air in general. Some of it falls into the gutters. Many people see the leaves and debris being removed from the gutters but donít really notice the dirt. Even many of those who sell systems designed to make it so that one ďnever has to clean out the gutters againĒ donít realize the amount of dirt in the gutters. Some of this dirt will wash out, and if one is lucky, a lot will wash out. However, if it is building up and never checked one will eventually have a BIG bill to replace the gutters as the weight of the dirt has caused damage. On average I remove about a quarter inch of dirt every year from my gutters. In other words, having to clean out the gutters may well be saving you a big future bill. It also gives you a different perspective from which to check on the roof and yard. Sometimes problems can be seen from above which are not evident from the ground.

As for paying for the heat in the home, in Summer one pays for cooling the home. I look forward to Spring and Autumn because there is at least one month in each season where I donít have to do either. I turn off my thermostat. The months are usually March and October, but they do change according to that yearís weather pattern. In my opinion, this suggestion is too late for this year in my area, but it is something positive to look forward to next year.

You get the idea. Whatever there is that you consider negative, look for the positive. As you get in the habit of finding the positive in every situation you will find that you will be more optimistic in general.

Something else positive about Autumn: Thanksgiving. I wish you a safe, bountiful, and thoroughly enjoyable Thanksgiving.

Till next timeÖ.