I like to think that I am generally a very positive person. I try and find the light in all situations, to appreciate the good things going on and to keep negativity at a minimum. That’s not to say I don’t have bad days or stressful situations. I just try to embrace the good when it’s there so that in the more challenging moments, I have positive things to reflect on to help get me through it.
I choose to have a positive mindset because it provides me the fuel I need to get through life. It gives me the courage to tackle my goals and it opens my eyes to the possibilities that are in front of me.
Here are a few tips to lead a more positive life:
- Keep the negative moments where they are
Over the course of the day we are sure to encounter times where we feel frustrated, stressed, angry, let down and a host of other negative emotions. It’s important to feel the feels when they happen and to appreciate them for what they are. But once the problem and those feelings have been addressed, move on. Don’t allow yourself to carry the negativity with you throughout the rest of your day. Doing so will allow that one bad moment to poison the other moments that very well could have been enjoyable. Leave the negativity where you found it. Ask yourself, did you really have a bad day? Or did you have a bad moment that you allowed to take over the rest of your time?
- Counteract Negative Self Talk with Positive Thoughts
I think we are all guilty of dwelling on our shortcomings. After all, we are our own worst critics. But playing those negative thoughts on repeat in our head is doing more damage than what we realize. When you catch yourself in a weak moment, consciously recognize that and replace the thought with something more kind. Instead of kicking yourself for stumbling through a presentation, be proud of yourself for stepping outside of your comfort zone. Remind yourself of the courage it took to speak in front of others. Allow the more positive dialogue to speak louder than the negative.
- Acknowledge the Good Things
We can be so quick to point out the things that go wrong, but we don’t always recognize the things that go right. When a happy thought passes through your mind, say it out loud. Whether that’s a funny memory, a warm moment or maybe even just the thought of how someone’s kind words made you feel. Say it out loud, it gives life to that positive energy and can make it more meaningful. Did you get every single green light on the way home? That’s awesome, take a moment to think of how much time you saved. Soak that in. Embrace the positive things when they come your way, even if they’re small. Another idea is to keep a log or journal of good thoughts and things that you experience. That can be especially helpful on days that are really challenging. It’s nice to be able to remember the good things going on for us when it feels like everything else is going wrong.
- Acts of Service
Do or say something kind for someone else, it feels good. Passing someone in the elevator and notice their new shoes? Compliment them. Take an extra minute on the phone with mom to ask how she’s doing. Write a thank you letter. Water your neighbor’s plants. All of these things feel good to do because we know that it’s helping others or making their lives better, happier or more fulfilled. In turn, we feel better. That’s just our nature.
Being positive isn’t hard, it just takes practice. Take one of these tips and follow through with it. Actually try it out and see how it makes you feel. I bet it feels a lot better than dwelling on the bad things.