9 Great Ways to Live a More Positive Life
“Few things in the world are more powerful than a positive push. A smile. A word of optimism and hope. And you can do it when things are tough.”
- Richard M. DeVos
Note: This guest post was written by personal development blogger Henrik Edberg. You can check out his website here.
I like finding ways to improve my life and bring more positivity into it. Although I´m just at the beginning of that journey I´ve already found some useful ideas for doing just that. Maybe they can help you too to have more fun, improve your relationships, your business, your health and your life. I hope so.
1. Appreciate as much as you can.
This is one of those very simple things you can do to bring more positivity in to your life. I have also found appreciation to be a great way to turn an angry, sad and frustrated mood around to a more positive one.
Simply appreciate anywhere and everywhere in your day: appreciate the great weather, appreciate the kids playing in the park, appreciate your tasty and nutritious meal and appreciate the good looking guy/gal that just walked past you. Appreciate the things you have and the things you experience. Doing this for a minute or two always gives me a positive boost and improves my outlook on the world.
2. Stop comparing yourself to others.
If you don´t then you´ll just create a lot of unnecessary pain in your life. If you pass one person then you´ll just find another person more successful than you. And your brief sense of being a winner will transform once again into anxiety, fear, tummy-aches and possibly heart-attacks. Instead start comparing yourself to yourself. Try to improve yourself and see how you grow and become a more successful and happier person. Focus on yourself, not the other people around you, no matter if they are more or less successful. It may sound corny or clichéd, but I feel it´s both a healthier and more successful way to work and view life.
3. Realize that it is possible to choose how you react.
You don´t have live your life in reaction. You have a choice. There is always a gap between stimuli and reaction. If you focus on that gap it will widen and although it might seem in the beginning like stimuli and your reaction are tied together that is not the case. The more you think about this and try to use it by consciously choosing, over time (for me it was months but it can surely be achieved quicker) the gap will appear larger and larger and that will make the process easier. And it will become easier and easier to choose a useful reaction to challenges, problems and situations in your life.
4. Educate yourself.
Self-education can be a great help to live a more positive life. Read great books on the areas of your life you want to improve. Maybe it’s it your financial situation. Or your health. Or your relationships. Ask people with more success in that area than you what they did to improve. If you have a problem in your life, most likely a lot of people have had that problem the last few thousand years. And, at least one of them – or more likely a few – has written down how they solved that problem in a great way. Feed your mind daily – or weekly – with great solutions and inspirational and useful information.
5. Act as if.
Your emotions work backwards too. So even if you don´t feel positive, confident, calm or decisive you can act like it. And after you have done that for a few minutes, guess what happens? You will actually start to feel positive, confident, calm or decisive.
If you don´t know how to act observe other people around you – it may be friends, co-workers, family or celebrities from any time and age – who have the quality you´d like to have. Then imitate them. If you don´t believe in this, then just smile – even if you have to force yourself – for 30 seconds right now and see how you feel after that.
6. Live in the now.
Don´t let your thoughts drift into the past or future more than necessary. It’s often a sure-fire way to start negative loops of thoughts in your mind. And they can dig you deep down into a negative spiral of thoughts that can last for day, week or even years. Plan your life, reflect on the lessons you can learn from the past. But then work, play and live in the now as much as possible.
7. Do some mental rehearsal.
This is great way to improve your performance and decrease anxiety in any upcoming situation. Maybe you´re heading into a meeting soon. Then visualize now how great the events will unfold – see and hear it – and also how great will you feel at this meeting. See yourself smiling, being positive, open, confident or how you´d like to act and feel. See the excellent outcome in your mind. Then release by visualizing that it has already happened, that the meeting is over with the desired result. This is surprisingly effective and will get you into a great and relaxed mood – or at least decrease your negative feelings and expectations – before even stepping into any meeting or other situation.
8. Redefine failure.
Michael Jordan once said: “I’ve missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I’ve been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.”
Society may have brought you up to fear failure. But if you can rethink failure not as something to fear but rather useful feedback it can improve your life immensely. A failure may hurt for a while but then you can learn one or many lessons from it. And then you try again. And again. And failure becomes less and less frightening. All successful people have failed many, many times. But they know that there are still a lot of great new people and opportunities out there. So they try again. And sooner or later they have success once again.
9. Focus on what you want, not on what you don´t want.
One common problem is to focus your thoughts on what you don´t want rather than what you want. If you do that then it will be hard to get what you want in life. If you want to improve your finances then focus on having a great financial situation rather than your lack of money and your debts. If you want a new relationship then focus on meeting a lot of new people and forming great relationships rather than focusing on your loneliness and your lack. If you don´t then you´ll miss many opportunities that you mind just blocks out since it´s focused on your lack. But if you do then opportunities will suddenly start to pop out of all that stimuli that is your world. Your mind can mostly just see what you focus it on. So focus on what you want in life.
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