A friend recently remarked to me about how, by slightly reframing certain situations we can sometimes hugely alter their meaning, often for the better.

“We have a career housekeeper named Gloria who comes in once a week to help us clean our home,” he said. “One day Gloria stopped being herself. For weeks after she was always poutting. When I asked how she was doing, she’d reply morosely, ‘Same as last week.’

“Over time I realized she was not happy about her work and position in life.

“One day, I said to her, ‘Gloria, I’ve been thinking a lot about you and your work.’ At once she perked up.  ‘Oh,’ she said. Her frown dissolved into a little smile.

“I said, ‘You’re so very lucky to be doing what you do for a living. You get to go into people’s homes and make them a better place for their owners. You make people happier when you finish your job. You improve the world, bit by bit, by bringing order to it. You’re making the world a better place every day. Very few people have jobs like that, you know.’

“After that her mood changed completely. Her pouting stopped. And every time she came into work she’d do it with a bounce in her step, and a smile on her face.”