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Motivation Mondays: Stinking Thinking #mondaymotivation

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“We all need a daily check up from the neck up to avoid stinkin thinkin which ultimately leads to hardening of the attitudes.” Zig Ziglar

Motivation Mondays: Stinking Thinking

Motivation Mondays: Stinking Thinking

Zig Ziglar – Attitude Makes All The Difference

If you have only one smile in you, give it to the people you love. Don’t be surly at home, then go out in the street and start grinning ‘Good morning’ at total strangers. Maya Angelou
Every day you must unlearn the ways that hold you back. You must rid yourself of negativity, so you can learn to fly. Leon Brown
No Stinking Thinking: The greatest of all mistakes is to do nothing because you think you can only do a little. Zig Ziglar

Are you in the habit of treating your problems as epic failures? Do you know there is a name for it? Yes, it is called “Stinkin Thinkin.” The phrase was used in the 1990 bestseller The Feeling Good Handbook, by David D. Burns, M.D.  in which Dr. Burns made us realize that whenever the first thought or typical daily thoughts that pop into our heads are derisive, demeaning and negative thoughts about ourselves, we are practicing Stinking Thinking/Irrational Thinking; “Our thoughts have taken on an unhealthy attitude, one that is working against us instead of for us.”  The much loved, and one of my all time favorite motivational speakers, Zig Ziglar, took the term worldwide and used it in some of his presentations (check out the videos above and below).

We all go through challenging times in our lives, and the hypercritical, negative backtalk can become a routine way in which we chide ourselves for not living up to some expected norm. The truth is that all of us fail at something, and our failures do not have to define our entire existence. I believe that when we fall/fail, it is an opportunity to look at our actions, our thinking and do something about it. Wallowing in self pity will only give us a temporary out, and then we have to sit up and face reality. Changing our patterns  is crucial if we want to improve our situation; our thinking must change too. Even though today is a leap year, we still have to plan our day and complete our tasks… can you imagine if we waited to finish projects every 4 years? That would a clear example of ST/Stinking Thinking.

A STORY: The Fishermen’s Wives

Once there were three fishermen’s wives who enjoyed spending time at the fish market selling the catch their husbands brought in every day. The three wives loved to sit and complain about their stinking lives, and  about how they had nothing to do but go to the fish market every day to sell fish to hobs and snobs who barely acknowledged their existence. You see, they were miserable, whinny ladies and we know that misery loves company. One day, an elegant lady appeared at the market. She was warm and friendly and spoke nicely to the three wives and thanking them profusely for their services.  The  3 women were taken aback because this was not the typical way the customers treated them. Before the lady left with her huge purchase of fish, the women, out of curiosity, asked her what she did for a  living.

“I run a Bed and Breakfast for weary travelers and I always make sure they get the freshest foods.” said Lady M

The ladies eyes lit up as they wondered out loud what it must be like to spend a night in a B and B.

“Oh, I put fresh flowers on the mantle, draw warm baths for my guests, and feed them freshly made meals. Would you like to spend a night?” Lady M asked the 3 ladies.

“Oh YES!” The 3 fisher-men’s wives shouted in unison.

A date was set and on that day, the 3 women headed over to the B and B. As promised, they were welcomed warmly, pampered and fed the freshest foods. They enjoyed the best Lady M had to offer, and when they were exhausted at the end of the evening, they retired to a beautiful suite with fresh flowers and scented sheets. They settled in for the night but,  one woman started to toss and turn and, soon, the other two joined her.  A conversation ensued.

“Those flowers smell too sweet. They are making me sick!” said one woman

“The lavender on the sheets is giving me a headache!” added another

“Oh, the softness of the pillows and blankets are making me feel bad … a third chimed in.

As the whining escalated, they all agreed this lifestyle was not for them. They agreed to sneak into the kitchen and look for some fresh fish and off they went. Soon they found some containers of fresh fish and, gathering them together, they headed back to the room where they strew the fish all over the suite. Soon the whole suite stank of warm and rotting fish.

“Ha!” one of  the three wives said, as they settled  in again for the night,  “Stinky fish is perfect… that is exactly what we want!” and they fell fast asleep as the pungent aroma spread through the B and B, waking up all the other guests, who quickly gathered their things and fled the establishment. Needless to say, once the lady owner found out the source of the stench, the 3 wives were never invited back again. Is this your approach to life and opportunities… stinking thinking!?


“We can’t solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.” Albert Einstein

Motivation Mondays: Stinking Thinking

Motivation Mondays: Stinking Thinking

Dr Wayne Dyer: Your Thoughts Are Creating Your Reality (Law of Attraction)

People often say that motivation doesn’t last. Well, neither does bathing—that’s why we recommend it daily. Zig Ziglar
And most people would say they want change in their lives. They want circumstances to change, people to change, the world to change… And it seems it rarely occurs to us that we need to change. Joyce Meyer
Drag your thoughts away from your troubles… by the ears, by the heels, or any other way you can manage it. Mark Twain


What are you going to do next? In  The Feeling Good Handbook, Dr. Burns identified 10 types of Stinking Thinking/Irrational thinking that we often practice without stopping to consider the negative impact those thoughts have on our general motivation, our drive to succeed, and our desire to change. Let’s take a look: 1. All-or-nothing thinking – You tend to see everything through a narrow lens that has no room for flexibility or change. 2. Over-generalization – Every bad moment becomes grounds for seeing your life as over with no solutions to consider 3. Mental Filter – You fixate on minutiae over one negative  event and let it take you down. 4. Discounting the positive –  You brush off the good things in your life as irrelevant because they don’t count in comparison to all the bad. 5. Jumping to conclusions –  You are always assuming that nothing good can come of a situation. Is this You? It’s time to develop a new perspective. Take a look at the worksheet below and use the prompts to help rethink your negative position. Come back soon for the remaining 5 points  below. (Updated

Three Step Worksheet: Resolving to change our thinking
The details for Motivation Mondays are below. Join in! The themes for February and March 2016 are:

02/15 – PRESIDENTS DAY – third Monday of month –
02/22 – PAIN –
02/29 – LEAP YEAR

03/07 – 8 International Women’s Day
03/14 – 13 Daylight Savings Begins at 2:00 a.m., 15 Ides of March, 17 St. Patrick’s Day, –
03/21 – 19 International Earth Hour –  20 International Day Of Happiness, Palm Sunday, Spring (Vernal) Equinox, –
03/28 – 23 Purim begins at sundown Yin and Yang, 25 Good Friday, 27 Easter Sunday

Are You Looking for Ways to Stay Creative in 2016?

– Join the Daily Post Post-a-day or Post-a-week Challenge.

— Join the BlogHer Writing Lab


More Below!

“Don’t keep allowing the same things to upset you. Life’s too short to live that way.” Joel Osteen

Motivation Mondays: Stinking Thinking

Motivation Mondays: Stinking Thinking

Zig ZiglarThe Law Of Attraction: Believe In Yourself

You have to learn to say no without feeling guilty. Setting boundaries is healthy. You need to learn to respect and take care of yourself. Anon
A great attitude becomes a great mood. A great mood becomes a great day. A great day becomes a great year. A great year becomes a great life. Anon
Stop thinking too much, It’s alright not to know the answers; they will come to you when you least expect it. Anon


Every day, we have many opportunities to choose things that lift us up and set aside narrow minded self talk that brings us down. Yes, we are all flawed and we experience disappointments and our share of failed attempts at X but don’t stay there. Getting up and moving forward is a dynamic way to cultivate success tools. Lets look at the remaining five types of stinking thinking:  6. Magnification – You have a tendency to exaggerate problems ; I call it the old building mountains out of mole hills. 7. Emotional Reasoning – You create justifications for all the things you believe will go wrong because your belong to the school of gloom and doom. 8. “Should” statements – You are stuck on shoulda/woulda/coulda with little room for flexibility and possibility. Let them go! 9. Labeling  – You endlessly ascribe negative labels to yourself, your actions and those you interact with. Labels box us in and keep us stuck in old tapes that need to be erased. 10. Personalization and Blame –  You play the guilt-tripping and blame game. If you have a tendency to see yourself in the worst light when things happen or you always blame others for your misery, you are stuck in  #10.

What to do? Live your life and be more compassionate with yourself and others. Perfection is not a requirement for being alive. Skip the semantics about whether you fail up or fall down. Just enjoy the life you have with gratitude and a willingness to put circumstances in a perspective that is neither harsh nor extreme. An acronym I use for SUCCESS is Stand Up Cultivate Creative Effort to Stimulate Success. If we learn nothing else from this, let’s  agree to learn that as we believe, so we  become.  Let’s all make an effort to shift gears and be grateful for the good in our lives… Trust me, the shift will lift your spirit too.


Source: Zen Antics All stories via

Positive Motivation Tip: Your thoughts have great impact on your results. Monitor your stinkin thinkin with a positive attitude

Motivation Mondays is open to anyone who wishes to share a motivational quote, photo, personal challenge or a post that encourages others to start the week on an upbeat note.
Basic Instructions: Each week, I will have a motivation word to help us create a response. (See listed words for the months above/below)
Email address: You may email or share your post as a comment and I will add it to the round-up of related posts. email it to: contact(@)mirthandmotivation(.)com
Category tag: – Share your post using Motivation Mondays
Twitter hashtag: – Use this on Twitter #MotvnM
Dedicated Page: There is a dedicated page for Motivation Mondays. It has the same instructions and will include other helpful tools and a link to the round-up
Facebook Page: MotivationOnMondays Join our page and add your post and/or any motivational piece you think will be helpful to others.
Facebook Community: We have a Facebook community forum to compliment the page. It serves as another way to share uplifting posts and thoughts. Please join in and add your voice.

Badge: – I created a fun badge using PicMonkey’s free photo editing tools. You can create your own, use WordPress’ integrated tool on your blog or you are welcome to use mine. (see dedicated page)
Tag: – Motivation Mondays
Hashtag: – #MotvnM

Related Posts

PHOTO CREDITS/ATTRIBUTIONS: Stories via Zen Stories on   Quotes via BrainyQuotes, All Photos: Thought Bubble, Smell of Tammany, Category:Smell, via Wikipedia

Until Next Time…
Ask. Believe. Receive. ©
Elizabeth Obih-Frank
Mirth and Motivation
Positive Kismet

45 Comments leave one →
  1. 29/02/2016 3:59 pm

    “Stinkin’ thinkin’ – Funny way of saying it, but that’s just exactly what it is!

    • 01/03/2016 2:20 pm

      Yes, it is a catchy and funny phrase and yet hits the mark wwhere we all need it. We all have our ST days and this is a reminder for us all… TY! 😆

  2. 29/02/2016 10:56 pm

    I love your motivation Mondays – that I read with my Tuesday morning coffee!

    • 01/03/2016 1:36 pm

      Thank you Gilly! <3 I just added the remaining 5 types of stinking thinking. I love it because these are very human qualities that we've all experienced in one form or anther. No one is immune and that is fine as long as we don't stay stuck. Now i need my afternoon coffee! 😉

  3. Rosey permalink
    01/03/2016 7:34 am

    We’ve all been victim to stinking thinking at one point or another. It’s awesome though when you realize it, catch it and throw it back in the depths of the ocean where it belongs. 🙂

    • 01/03/2016 1:30 pm

      Well said Rosey! We’ve all been there and that is what makes us human; recognizing the perfection in our imperfections. <3

  4. Shannon Peterson permalink
    08/03/2016 7:56 am

    I love that maya angelou quote about sharing a smile with people you love. It’s amazing what one smile can do to turn around another’s day!

  5. thehamiltoninc permalink
    10/03/2016 6:47 am

    I struggle with this in every area of my life and have to recharge daily. Some really awesome and effective advice. Thank you!

  6. Melgie permalink
    10/03/2016 7:15 am

    I love reading the story of The fisherman Wives. Its amazing how nice to have great people who helped other to experience great things. Thanks for sharing.


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