No matter who you are or what your life is like, there are going to be times when it feels like everything is falling out of place. Maybe you lose your job or your partner leaves you, maybe you injure yourself or a family member falls ill, maybe someone breaks into your home or maybe your new boss turns out to be a total freak! There are times when you feel everything is going wrong. And when you play music to escape from it all, the playlist is full of sad songs. Or maybe you turn on the TV to distract yourself, all you could watch is the horrible news about the world in a seemingly never-ending crisis.
But it’s important to know that you have the power to respond to the situations that bother you. Without your response, the situations aren’t that powerful as they seem to be. That’s because it’s your thoughts that create your reality. And I mean that quite literally! The things you choose to focus on determine your experiences in life.
If you focus on the negative things, the world will seem to be a terrible place. On the contrary, if you start focusing on positive things, that’s when you will know that the world is kind, beautiful, and full of incredible opportunities.
Here are 5 powerful tips on how to have an optimistic and motivated outlook, no matter what’s happening in your life or the world around you.
- Be aware of your thoughts.
Take time to introspect yourself. Pay attention to what you spend most of your time thinking about. Start paying more attention to the things you tell yourself, and don’t forget that you have the power to change them. Take a moment to reflect on your thoughts whether they were positive or negative? Were they optimistic or judgemental? Do you run from certain emotions or do you accept yourself as who you are?
It’s worth your attention. Even Science shows that the mental habits we cultivate can change the way our brains are wired (neuroplasticity). According to Rick Hanson, “Neuroplasticity refers to the malleable nature of the brain, and it’s constant, ongoing. Self-directed neuroplasticity means doing it with clarity and skillfulness, and intention.” Isn’t that great?
- Reframe negative thoughts.
This is one of the best things you can do for yourself. Whenever you find yourself spiraling in negativity such as, “I am so stupid”, “I can’t do it. I know I will fail.” – stop yourself and transform those thoughts into positive ones.
For example, you can tell yourself, “I know sometimes I do stupid things but I am wise enough to learn from my mistakes and not repeat them.”, “I know I have failed at this, but I won’t give up because this time I am not starting from scratch but with experience.” And trust me, you will begin to observe changes in your life.
- Visualize positive outcomes.
Another wonderful idea is to visualize positive outcomes. That doesn’t, in any way, mean that you stop working for your goals and start spending time to visualize good results. Unless you give action and effort to your thoughts, you won’t get results.
Take on a new challenge at work, ask out your crush, go on that trip you always wanted to, make a new sales call, travel to a new city! Do not let your fears come into your way. Imagine what it will be like – the more clearly you will see it in your mind, the easier you’ll find it to make that vision a reality. You can also make a vision board where you pin your goals and picture yourself fulfilling those.
- Practice daily gratitude.
Oftentimes, I ask the readers to do this because I strongly believe that daily gratitude practice is necessary to retrain our brains for positivity. Take 5 minutes to pen down 5 things in your journal that you are grateful for. Those things can be something as big as achieving your dream job or as little as a sunny morning.
When you take time to acknowledge anything good in your life, you realize that you have so many wonderful things to be grateful for. Make it a daily practice and it will become easier for you to maintain a positive mindset. You can even deepen this experience by incorporating meditation to become the master of your own thoughts. You can read about ways to calm your mind here.
- Reduce news consumption.
Okay, catching the latest updates might or might not be good. The important question is does it really help you? Most news is generally terrible – news about storms, droughts, robberies, floods, murders, protests, political corruption, and so on. Almost all of which you can do nothing about. In fact, so much of what is called ‘news’ these days is mere conjecture to provoke outrage and fear. All it does is make us angry and helpless. Doesn’t it?
Trust me, you’d be doing yourself a great favor if you devote the time and energy to improving yourself rather than watching the news. I am not telling you to stop being aware of current events. All I am trying to say is that tune in once a week to catch up on the latest updates. I guarantee you won’t miss out on anything crucial. Plus, you will be able to incorporate peace and positivity into your brains.
So, these are the 5 ways I think are important to retrain your minds for positivity. When you boil it all down, the most compelling reason for trying to be positive is that it improves your life in all aspects. What do you think?
Are there any more tips you would like to add to this list? Do you follow any of these? Please feel free to comment your thoughts below. I’d really love to know your wonderful recipes for maintaining an optimistic mindset. Let’s all work together to make this world a more beautiful, peaceful, and happy place. Are you in?