Purr more; hiss less. This could be a good mantra for our lives. In other words, look for the good things in life instead of focusing on the bad things. Find solutions to problems instead of whining and complaining about them. When someone spills an entire glass of iced tea (after sweetening it with sticky sugar), wipe off as much of it as possible, then wait for the rest to dry instead of having it ruin lunch with friends. Let someone drive in front of you in heavy traffic instead of closing the gap between your car and the car in front of you, making it impossible for another driver to enter the road. Say “hello” to the stranger in the elevator instead of looking down, while refusing to make eye contact. Bring a coat or jacket when visiting a cold climate instead of complaining about how cold it is. Be glad it’s not a drought instead of complaining about the rain. Look at rainbows after it rains. If you don’t like to get wet when it rains, wear a raincoat instead of whining about how your clothes and hair got wet. When you come to Florida, especially in the summer months, wear light weight clothing instead of complaining about the heat. When people are mean, disrespectful, and self centered, decide whether to spend more time with them or whether to spend your time with nice, kind, and friendly people. When people argue about things they know nothing about, walk away or change the subject. Look for your family’s and friends’ good qualities, including the fact they are your family and friends, instead of criticizing them for who they are. Do the things that bring you joy instead of dreading doing the things you dislike. If you don’t like the music, change the channel instead of complaining about it. Purr more, whenever possible, and hiss less, by controlling how you live your life.
It is sometimes difficult in today’s polarized world to remember to purr more. There are so many things to hiss about. But, as my now 102 year old friend Dr. Fran Kinne reminds me, be positive. Melissa and I have a purr reminder in the form of a Siamese cat named Rex. Pick him up, hear him purr. It is almost like a switch gets turned on when you grab him. And we remark that it must be nice to have the life he does, now. You never know what animals think, remember, or contemplate, but this cat was found on the streets of Ft. Lauderdale, bedraggled and alone. So, to now have a nice home and regular meals (that he doesn’t have to catch on his own) he has something to purr about. Which takes me back to Fran’s point of being positive. I admit to my own struggles with that, and there are times in life when there seems little to be positive about whether there are health issues, financial, or family issues. But, there are many things in life that one can control, or at least attempt to steer in the right direction. It is important to find ways to channel the hisses rather than hissing, or throwing a tantrum, as I saw a child do the other day in an airport. I felt like hissing – United Airlines recently deserved more than a hiss – but, at least, after an unplanned delay, we were homeward bound, and that was something to purr about.