How to Make Good Things Happen

September 27, 2011

in Life Lessons, Parenting

a bunch of ice cream cones

Good thoughts.

It is that simple. Or so my son told me recently. As we were driving, out of nowhere, my son announced:

“Good thoughts make good things happen.”

It’s simple, but also true. I have written often about seeking the positive in challenging situations and that our perspective guides our own happiness. We shape our outlook on life. We can choose to be martyrs or victims, but we can just as easily choose to be happy and fulfilled.

As much as I enjoy comments from readers telling me something in my writing resonated, it is most rewarding to know that how I live my life is having a positive effect on my children. Monkey understands that we can control our happiness with how we view life. I felt like I earned a gold star as a mom that day.

And, true to any eight-year-old boy, he chose to test out this belief the same evening he made this wise statement in the car. After dinner he asked if we could go out for ice cream. “No,” I said, “We have a lot to do this evening before bedtime. Maybe this weekend.”

With the look of disappointment Monkey explained that he had been thinking good thoughts about ice cream all day, hoping it would work.

My response?

We were going for ice cream, of course.

Maybe I got played, but I like to think he learned that being positive has many rewards in life, including ice cream.


Joshua September 27, 2011 at 10:20 am

Reminds me of something we have at home by the door: “Change your thoughts and you change the world.” Meaning: Think good thoughts and the day will be a better day.
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Naked Girl in a Dress September 27, 2011 at 10:29 am

What a great quote to have by your door. I love it!

Kimberly at Rubber Chicken Madness September 27, 2011 at 10:49 am

I have that quote in my office. Keeps me focused on what I’m supposed to be doing!
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Vinny C September 27, 2011 at 12:04 pm

It’s a sound theory. I find that starting the day with positive outlook puts you in the right frame of mind to handle whatever comes your way.

That & a good morning coffee.
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Naked Girl in a Dress September 27, 2011 at 12:43 pm

If that morning coffee can be a Pumpkin Spice Latte, it is an even better start to the day.

Sara Grambusch September 27, 2011 at 12:49 pm

It is a great quote. It seems so obvious but it’s something we forget immediately. And if it leads to ice cream, then so be it!
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Naked Girl in a Dress September 27, 2011 at 9:28 pm

Monkey is a great kid. I love when my writing is inspired by children in my life–my own and other people’s kids too.

Mandy September 27, 2011 at 4:11 pm

I remember my sister telling my niece, who hated going to swim lessons, that tough girls get anything they want.

“Do tough girls get ice cream?” she asked.

“Yes they do,” my sister replied.

Ice cream is an important teaching tool.
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Naked Girl in a Dress September 27, 2011 at 9:27 pm

Agreed! I love the story. Thanks.

Random Girl September 27, 2011 at 8:53 pm

Yes, a gold star mom moment for sure! Your message, and positive outlook, is shining through to your kids and that is something to be proud of and thankful for. Now I want ice cream… commence positive ice cream thoughts….
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Naked Girl in a Dress September 27, 2011 at 9:27 pm

Thank you Random Girl. I hope your positive ice cream thoughts work out for you tonight.

Lisa September 28, 2011 at 12:29 am

What a great affirmation! Sure, you may have been played, but who cares? Your Monkey is smart AND a positive thinker. You can’t help but admire that…and reward it with ice cream.
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Naked Girl in a Dress September 28, 2011 at 4:33 pm

Thanks Lisa. Yes, he is a positive thinker. And he loves ice cream.

WowThatWasAwkward September 28, 2011 at 1:02 am

You son is very wise. We adults need to learn from our kids as much as they learn from us. Especially when there is ice cream involved.
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Naked Girl in a Dress September 28, 2011 at 4:34 pm

I try to be in the moment with them as much as possible and there are always little nuggets of wisdom. I am writing another post about something a neighbor’s child wrote in school about love. It is awesome and so is she.

P.J. September 29, 2011 at 6:42 pm

An excellent theory, indeed. I have tried to live that way myself, but sometimes real life gets in the way. To be an 8-year-old child and still be able to always think that way …

… and get ice cream out of it!

Ice cream, after all, is what this world truly needs more of. I’ve never had bad thoughts when ice cream was in my future.

He’s a wise one, that son of yours. Kudos to him on those great thoughts!
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Naked Girl in a Dress September 30, 2011 at 9:29 am

I think the “good thoughts” comes with practice and I think we all are working on this. Keep practicing P.J.

idiosyncratic eye December 10, 2011 at 8:49 am

Ah, the wisdom of young ones. Thanks for sharing. :)
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Naked Girl in a Dress December 10, 2011 at 8:54 am

There is so much to learn from little ones!

Tomekha December 10, 2011 at 10:44 am

Oooh, ur son is a badass player :) lol

It’s true though – positive thinking is POWERFUL
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Naked Girl in a Dress December 10, 2011 at 10:45 am

He totally uses his power to charm whenever possible!

Angie December 10, 2011 at 11:10 am

It’s always about the kids. Sometimes you have to give in to allow their beliefs to grow. Awesome post as usual.

Naked Girl in a Dress December 10, 2011 at 11:41 am

Thank you Angie! It is such a fun adventure being a part of the lives of children.

Trish December 10, 2011 at 1:46 pm

I love this! What a profound message, and so very true. Maybe you and your insightful son need to make some sort of decorative art for your own front door… with his quote.


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Naked Girl in a Dress December 10, 2011 at 2:35 pm


You have a great idea about making a sign with his quote. He is struggling with something right now and has been frustrated. Having his own quote as a reminder would be a great thing.


Jenn @therebelchick December 10, 2011 at 11:01 pm

I think it’s wonderful that you rewarded his positive thinking – and his excellent playing on your weakness skills – what is a little ice cream going to hurt anyone? Sometimes it’s fun just to indulge our children and their innocence and playfulness!
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Naked Girl in a Dress December 11, 2011 at 7:47 am

I completely agree Jenn! My son was simply beaming when I told him we were going. It seemed to reinforce his belief. Denying him of that would be like saying you can’t make good things happen for yourself.

The M Half December 11, 2011 at 2:14 pm

I also believe that we find whatever we truly look for. If we are cynical and fearful, we will find more evidence to support that. If we are positive and encouraging, we will find more to support that.

Great post – you’ve got me thinking on a post I’ve been considering for a few weeks.
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Naked Girl in a Dress December 12, 2011 at 8:30 am

Thanks for visiting and for the comment. I am glad something I wrote could spark a post for you!

I completely agree that our outlook can often determine events in our lives. Seeking out and being open to positive opportunities is the best approach in life.

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