Think Positive. Be optimistic. Stay hopeful. Have faith in the affirmative. While this might sound like a simple thing to do, it is really a lot easier said than done. But it can be… and should be… a priority in life. Why? Because our thoughts determine our habits, our habits influence our actions, and our actions change our circumstances. So, if you don’t like where you are currently at, the way to change this is to start with a new mindset.
But how does one train their brain to stay positive? How do we, as people, overcome negative thoughts, feelings and emotions that seem to constantly assault our minds? Simply stated, you begin to make small changes in the right direction. Just as someone who desires to lose weight begins to change their habits, those who aspire optimism must also make adjustments.
1. Be Thankful
One of the first things that you can begin doing, no matter what the situation, is to increase your level of gratitude. While our minds will seek to dwell on the things that are not perfect or that are going wrong in life, we can make a conscious decision to focus on those things that are great instead. Instead of concentrating on the deal or sale that didn’t go through, be thankful for all of the ones that did. Propose to be thankful for something every day of your life. While it may seem like a small step, you truly will begin to teach your brain to look at the glass half full over time. It is also a great idea to keep a journal, list or log of the positive things in your life. Just as reading a long laundry list of faults can discourage you, revisiting a record of accomplishments and victories can be great to boost morale when things seem bleak.
2. Change The Way You Talk
When I was a child, my mother loved the saying, “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all.” While her guidance was usually an attempt to stop name-calling battles among siblings, the basis of the advice still rings true today. Whenever I am tempted to start running away at the mouth about all the things that are wrong, I instead just keep my mouth closed. Words have a way of elevating a situation, whether good or bad. Choose to speak good of yourself, your business, your financial situation and your life in general. You may be amazed at how quickly the things you talk about become a reality.
3. Laugh At Adversity
When my brother was 12, he found himself the victim of the class bully. He tried to be strong and tough, but that just seemed to make matters worse. One day, though, he decided that he didn’t care what was said about him and he began to laugh at every jest that was thrown his direction. Once the bully found out that he couldn’t rattle my brother anymore, he moved on to a new target to abuse. Often in life, adversity is the biggest bully to success. Many people cower, cry, retreat and become overpowered when it arises, leading to defeat and a very negative view on life. To combat this, take a moment to laugh at the situation. Make it a point to not let misfortunes rattle you and conquer your life. Instead, laugh! Be as cocky and as brazen as you possibly can, even when you feel life giving up.
4. Help Someone Else Out
Whether you call it the golden rule, karma or something else, remember that what goes around comes back around. By making it a point to help others overcome their negative circumstances when you have the opportunity, you will be training your brain to expect people to do the same for you. When things begin to go south in your own life, focus on the good will that you have spread around and have faith that you will reap the benefits of those good deeds when you need it the most. Then smile… knowing that the universe is on your side.
5. Do Something
In many cases, negative thoughts seem to heavily occupy idle minds. When you begin to feel your brain moving into those dark places of thought, change the channel quickly. Whether you choose to daydream about your next vacation, rearrange your desk or office, or brainstorm about new innovations, find something to do besides dwelling on everything that is depressing. While some may call this distraction, it really is a training process for your thinking. Eventually, your brain will begin to form a habit of doing this, and it will be easier to combat negativity and stay positive.
While it is not bad to acknowledge problems and consider failures in order to find solutions, constantly keeping these things in the forefront of your thinking will only cause defeat in the long run. By training your brain to stay positive, you will be better able to move past adversities, stay motivated when obstacles arise to success and make decisions with a clear head. Cultivating this positive thinking really can make all the difference. So, determine to be an optimist… focus on accomplishment… and train your brain to stay positive!