Are you a positive or negative person? The perception that you have of yourself and the perception that others have of you may be completely different.
If you often hear people encourage you to lighten up or tell you that things are not always as bad as you think they are, you may have a negative perception of the world. Making the switch from being negative to positive does not happen overnight. However, it can be accomplished. Studies have shown that being positive can impact your physical health and mental health. If you are a positive thinker, positive things happen. A study showed that people who had an optimistic view of the world had a reduced chance of getting infections, cancer, and heart disease. Thinking positively can improve your quality of life. Positive thinkers have more energy. Positivity leads to improved psychological and physical health.
Your lifespan is increased, it is easier to deal with stress, and it is easier to handle the unexpected if you are positive. Positive thinking isn’t hocus-pocus. You can’t positively think away your problems. What positive thinking will do is make the challenges you face appear more manageable.
1. Surround Yourself with Positive People
Attitudes are contagious. You have likely been in a room full of people laughing. Out of nowhere, you laugh. Conversely, you have probably entered a place where everybody is depressed and quickly felt down. Misery loves company. Negative people want you to be negative. It validates their skewed view of the world.
A negative person will often justify their negativity by saying that they are being a realist. If you are around someone who is negative, your self-esteem will take a hit. Positive people build everyone up. A positive person will help you reach your goals. If you want to be positive, surround yourself with people who see the bright side of life.
2. Engage in Positive Self Talk
You are with yourself all the time. Why would you say mean things to yourself? Unfortunately, this is what people do a lot. You make a mistake and say, “Man, that was stupid of me.” Or you fall into an unpleasant habit and say, “What’s the matter with you? Why can’t you beat this?” None of this helps. All you are doing is reinforcing your negative opinion of yourself. To break free, you need to be the voice of positivity in your head.
Repeat to yourself all the things you like about who you are. When something goes wrong, cheer yourself up. Just a minor shift from negative self-talk to positive self-talk can completely change the way you see the world and the way you see yourself.
3. Love to Laugh
Laughter lowers anxiety and stress. It can combat anxiety, improve your mood, and boost your self-esteem. You should look for humor in every situation. You especially need to do this when you are dealing with a situation that is difficult. This forces you to learn how to change negative behavior patterns into something positive.
You will hear people say, “Give yourself permission to cry.” In essence, they are saying give yourself permission to feel sadness. You also need to give yourself permission to laugh. Even when things are going bad, realize that it is okay to feel happy or to experience joy. Forcing yourself to laugh, even if you are not feeling like it, can help improve your mood. Just the action of laughter has a powerful psychological impact.
4. Remember Your Reasons to Be Grateful
The human brain has a tremendous capacity for remembering the worst. It can remind you of the things you have done wrong and things that didn’t turn out the way you want them to. It is hard to remember the good things. Write them down. When things are going bad, refer to your gratitude journal. This will help you put things in perspective.
Switching from a negative viewpoint to a positive one doesn’t happen overnight. But it can happen. It requires hard work, good friends, and a determination to live a life that sees the glass half-full.