What Two Bouquets of Pink Carnations Taught Me About Focus

How to choose to see the good
Illustration of three young children smiling and holding pink flowers
How would you view the flowers? | Image made by author with Canva AI.

When I started pursuing positivity, it wasn’t because I was sad. Instead, I realized I had a focus problem. No matter how great something in my life was, I always found a flaw in it.

One thing that helped me wake up is when two mom friends of mine both received a bouquet of pink carnations from their kids.

The first mother beamed with joy. She proudly displayed the carnations in a tall crystal vase (ad) right in the center of the dining room table. Everyone entering the house saw the flowers, and the mother gushed with pride as she described how the delicate petals were a gift from her young children.

The second mother took her bouquet, smiled, said a quiet thank you and shooed the kids outside to play. She placed the green-paper wrapped bouquet on the kitchen counter by the sink. After her little ones were out the door, this mother complained about how cheap the flowers were, how much she hated carnations, and how pink was at least favorite color.

Two moms, two gifts, two very different reactions.

At that moment, I realized the importance of focus. The flowers in each bouquet were identical, purchased at the same time from the same store. The mother’s focus made the only difference.

One mom chose to see the beauty. She was grateful because her children expressed their love by spending a little of their money on a pretty bouquet.

The other mother was unsatisfied, wanting more than what she received. Rather than appreciate her gift, she left it on the counter overnight. In the morning, when she saw the wilted flowers, she threw the bundle into the trash.

I can’t help but think her children were heartbroken to see the flowers in the garbage bag the next day.

Why am I talking about focus and positivity this morning? I wanted to explain why I started sharing scenes from my yard in the last few newsletters.

Every picture is a piece of beauty I found in my yard. I have a small yard, roughly an acre square, so there are not a lot of places to look to find beautiful gems. Yet, when I take the time to look for beauty, I always find it. Always.

This week’s pictures. The lower right picture shows my Bootsy attacking the monkey grass. | Photos by author.

The thing is, what you focus on can change your life. When you’re always looking for more or better, you may miss out on the great things you already have.

But when you’re ready to appreciate every piece of goodness surrounding you, life takes on a new meaning.

For this week, my dear friends, I encourage you to look for the good in your life. No matter what happens, look for the beautiful in it. I’m sure you’ll find something there.

Until next time, keep fighting.

Scott Ninneman


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