Positive Thinking: 5 Ways to Maintain An Optimistic Outlook
Positive thinking is a way of life, and it doesn’t require radical lifestyle changes. It’s not easy to remain optimistic in the face of life’s many challenges, but here are five habits that will help you maintain a positive outlook no matter what life throws at you.
Mindfulness is the practice of being aware of your true self and others in the context of your surroundings. Practicing mindfulness means taking stock of the things you want to change about yourself and your environment. Make a habit of writing down your thoughts and feelings and connecting them to your actions and reactions to the world around you. Mindfulness will help you change habits that are detracting from your quality of life. It also proves to you that positive change is always possible.
Positive thinking has to do with the focus of your thoughts: if you focus only on the negative, you might not be able to see the positive side of things. Expressing gratitude has been scientifically proven to help reduce negative thoughts and feelings and to increase feelings of closeness to others. Again, make a habit of taking time to reflect on what you’re thankful for. When the people around you make you happy or do kind things, let them know you’re grateful. It’s amazing how quickly positive relationships and associations will bloom.
Care for Yourself
Optimism can be hard, if not unthinkable when you’re exhausted, stressed, and overburdened. Especially if your life involves caring for other people, it can be easy to forget about your needs. Make time for yourself whenever you can. It’s not selfish, it’s smart. By striving to get enough sleep, eating right, and meeting your mental and physical needs, you’ll be calmer, happier, and more ready to meet challenges with a level head. Others around you will notice and will feed off of your positive energy.
Even if you’re often pressed for free time, exercise can have enormous mental benefits. By exerting yourself physically through aerobic exercise such as running or biking, you give yourself a physical outlet for pent-up anxiety that can keep you up at night. Biking can also be a wonderful family activity. A thirty-minute ride can get you and your loved ones out of the stuffy indoors, breathing fresh air, and focusing on the feeling of your legs and heart pumping. Biking and running have been proven to be extremely mentally-refreshing activities. Bike helmets can be found for less with coupon codes for nashbar.com. Even if it’s only once a week, make a commitment to exercise outside regularly. You’ll be committing yourself to a happier, calmer mind.
Seek Diverse Advice
Many of us frequently vent to the same friends and family members all the time, but getting the same kind of feedback can lead you into rigid mindsets that get in the way of cultivating optimism. Instead of calling up the same misery-buddy whenever you need advice, select three people with very different worldviews and get advice on the same issue from each of them. Hearing the points of view of people who think differently than you do can put bad situations into perspective, and can also help you come up with solutions to problems in your life. By expanding your reach, you may find that you strengthen relationships and begin to consider a wider, more freeing variety of options.