With all that is going on in the world, it can be a little difficult to stay optimistic and think positively about any variety of situations. Health, uncertainty, anxiety, employment and relationships are just some of the topics swirling around our thoughts, interactions and social media. And far too often, there's not much optimism mixed in. All of this pessimism and hopelessness, doom and gloom, does nothing to elevate us. That is why we have to make a conscious decision to become more optimistic and boost our positive thinking.
Purposely and strategically injecting positive thoughts into your day, your situations, your projects and everything else can do a lot to change the way you think and move in this world. It can even change the way people interact with you. Boosting your optimism can also have some great effects on your mental and emotional health, including:
- Reducing stress.
- Increasing joy and happiness.
- Feeling more satisfied.
Although there are plenty of great side effects that come along with thinking positively, you have to be realistic. Sometimes things are simply negative, not good. Sometimes we need to exhibit negative emotions. It's okay to be sad when someone dies. It's okay to get angry when you are mistreated. Ignoring or squashing the disagreeable or the shadowy side of life can lead to negative outcomes. We have to examine the negative and get to the root of it in order to accept, integrate or make peace with it.
Now that we've addressed both sides of the coin, negative and positive, let's look at a few ways we can give our positive thinking a little nudge. Practicing optimism makes it more accessible to your brain in more situations. Frankly, it's something we all can benefit from.
An attitude of gratitude can have a major impact on the way we frame things. Even when it seems like everything is falling apart, there is always something to be grateful for. Whether it's good health, a family that loves you, employment or just a good belly laugh, there is never any harm in honing in on the things that you're grateful for. The more often you are able to identify the things you're grateful for (oftentimes these are the things that matter the most in life), the more likely you'll be to focus on those things, which will in turn enable you to come up with creative solutions to your problems.
Celebrate Your Successes
No matter how big or insignificant you may think your successes are, it is important to celebrate them. Something as simple as getting a workout in today or passing on that afternoon snack deserves a pat on the back just as much as gaining a new client or starting a new and exciting project. The encouragement we give ourselves ultimately motivates us to keep up the good work and move toward other goals we may have.
The language we use both in our mouths and in our heads matters a lot. By memorizing and using positive words like able, tender, valuable and many others, you are forcing your brain to put them into it's go-to vocabulary. These words will be more likely to pop up in your speech and your thoughts the more you use them. Your brain will mature in positivity and you'll find yourself thinking about the world differently and behaving differently as well. Words are a very powerful tool that we have at our disposal, so let's choose them wisely.
Remember that practice makes progress. The more you put these strategies to work, the more readily accessible and second nature they will become. We all want to live happy and fulfilling lives, and boosting our optimism will do a lot more to help us get there than we may realize. What do you do to nudge your positivity?