To do lists – sometimes I write them, other times I have them in my head. Recently, I was mentally going over all that I had to do: “I have to _________, and then __________, and then _________.”
I was feeling just slightly negative – not that I particularly disliked all the things I had to do, but these things just made me busier than I wanted to be – they interfered with my doing other things that I would have preferred to do.
And then I had an attitude shift, simply by changing one word! Instead of “I have to…” I thought, “I get to…” All of a sudden, instead of feeling burdened by my to do list, I felt joy.
Changing that one word, for example in “I have to go grocery shopping” to “I get to go grocery shopping,” brings on an attitude shift that is beneficial to me and others around me. The change is from a duty to a privilege. I get to go to a store and select food to bring home for my family’s nourishment.
I get to clean the bathroom, eliminating germs for my family’s well-being (my children get to do this as well!).
When I make a discovery such as this concept, I share it with my children. My son was not happy when I told him we were going to work on French. “You get to do French!” I told him enthusiastically. “You have a mom who cares about your education and your future, and she is spending time with you so that you can thrive! You get to do French!” I’m not quite sure that he has caught it yet, but I get to keep teaching him to have a good attitude.
Whether from “having to do laundry” to “getting to do laundry”, or from “having to pick up this child from a lesson” to “getting to pick up this child from a lesson,” the reason we have to get to do things is because we have things (clothes, homes, people) in our lives. And that is a blessing!