By Nicole Philips
Did you know that the way you think about things can have a major impact on your happiness and on your physical health?
Recent studies suggest that thinking positively is the easiest way to increase your lifespan, lower your rates of disease, and lower stress and depression rates. When you think positively you’ll be happier, healthier, more centered, more productive, and more successful.
What exactly does it look like to think positively? When you study hard for a test, go in knowing you have done your best and don’t talk yourself into believing you’re going to fail. When you get in an argument with your best friend, don’t assume the worst of him or her by taking a little breath and not letting negative thoughts convince you of something that might not be true. When you look in the mirror, realize that you’re beautiful and pick out something you love about yourself.
Thinking positively isn’t always easy, especially when you’ve been hurt in the past. But just like anything else, thinking positively is a choice and you can make small decisions in your day-to-day life to think more positively so that you can improve your overall health.
Need some help getting started? Check out these tips:
1) Don’t expect perfection in yourself or others. Sometimes we tend to think that it’s the end of the world when we make a mistake or when other’s let us down. Realize that you and everyone else you know is human. Allow them to make mistakes
2) Hang around positive people! Do your friends constantly criticize others or even themselves? You don’t have to ditch your current friends completely, but realize that their negative attitudes may have an impact on the way you see the world and therefore how you feel about yourself and others. Try hanging out with friends who build people up!
3) Let the past stay in the past. If you’ve made mistakes in the past or you’ve been hurt by others, know that those previous experiences don’t have to define you and don’t have to define the way you think. You don’t need to be a victim any longer and you shouldn’t feel ashamed about getting the help you need from a counselor
4) Volunteer. Have you ever noticed that when you do something good for others you’re happier? Part of the reason that you feel that way is because you’ve chosen to do something positive with your time so brain wants to stay happy and think more positively too. No matter what you’re circumstance, take a Saturday with your mom or some friends and volunteer playing with the kids at the local children’s hospital or even a puppy shelter for puppies.
5) Keep a running list of things to be thankful for. Seriously! Right now come up with 10 things and add one thing every day. After a while, you’ll start seeing the sliver lining on every cloud as you continue to focus on the positive.
Whatever you do to think more positively, do it often and you’ll be happy with the results! Don’t forget that positivity is a choice, not a circumstance.