Negative thoughts get us down, plain and simple. But we all do it, to varying degrees we all have our habits of thinking badly about situations, about other ourselves and other people, and about life in general. And even though we know it doesn’t help, even though we know all too well that it just creates even more negativity in our life, somehow we find ourselves stuck in habitual negative thinking patterns over and over again.
Negative thinking is like wearing dark and dirty glasses; it fogs your vision and gives you a distorted picture of reality. When you are stuck in negative thinking it’s difficult to find any joy in life because your whole mindset has you convinced that happiness and joy are not even an option.
Negative thoughts create a wall between you and other people, because despite how open and kind they may be towards you, somehow you don’t trust them, you won’t allow yourself to open to them because you think their kindness is not real, and you know that in any case it won’t last for long.
A particularly harmful form of negative thinking is sometimes referred to as ‘negative negativity’. This is when you see your negative thinking patterns clearly, you become aware of them and how harmful they are, but that awareness in itself causes you to think badly about yourself, you get caught up in guilt which just becomes a source of further negativity.
Yes, it sounds grim, and it is. Yet we are not so far off as we may think. Negative thinking patterns are learned, and in the same way that we learned how to think badly about things, we can learn to think in more positive light. We can learn to see our negativity clearly, without giving ourself a hard time about it, and then we can learn to change our thinking habits, gradually lightening up the heavy burden.
Here are 5 Great Ways to Overcome Negative Thinking:
1. Use Breathing to Interrupt Negative Thinking Patterns.
Throughout your day, frequently pause whatever you are doing and simply be there and breathe. Sit there and feel your body and breath, notice the space around you, and ground yourself in the ordinary goodness of your world. Doing this often can help you to get in touch with your body and also the greater body of the physical world around you. There is tremendous richness and goodness to be found in the body, and it help you let go of and purify negative thinking.
2. Keep a ‘Negative Thinking Journal’.
Take a notebook with you during your day, and whenever you find yourself stuck in a negative thinking pattern, stop and make a note of it. Note what you are thinking, the cause of it, and also how you feel in your body. Then after two or three weeks, or however long it takes to accumulate significant data, sit down for an hour or so to explore what you have in your journal.
Look for common themes, recurring situations where you are often caught in negative thoughts. Make a note of what you learn, and then with your newfound awareness you can gradually change those patterns.
3. Do Things That You Enjoy.
Make time during your busy work week to enjoy activities that you know make you happy and feel good. We all want to be happy but we often forget to actually do it, to do the things that we know make us feel good.
Maybe you like going for long walks around the park or in your city, perhaps you enjoy going out for dinner and a film with a friend or by yourself, some people enjoy a relaxing massage, and for others exercise is the perfect pick me up. Whatever it is, slow down the busy pace and give yourself the pleasure that we all deserve.
4. Make It a Habit to Appreciate the Goodness in Your Life.
Learn to see how fortunate you are, how your life is a gift, and that no matter how difficult things may sometimes become, it is possible to raise your gaze up and see magic all around you. Notice things as simple as the feeling of the breeze on your skin, or the delicate intricacies of a leaf, or how amazing another person’s face it. By becoming attuned with the goodness of life and the world you develop an appreciative heart, and negativity simply dissolves into space.
5. Do Kind Things for Others.
Kindness is the greatest medicine available to ease our aching hearts and minds. Making another person happy is the best way to make ourself happy. Generosity in unsurpassed in its ability to put an end to negativity.
Sometimes we are so caught up in a negative mind set and our negative thinking patterns that we can’t bear to be kind in a person to person manner. In this case you can do kind things in secret. For example leave the best parking spot for someone else, or go the extra mile in cleaning up in the office lunch room even though nobody else will know it was you who did it.
Being kind in this quiet manner is a great way to practice kindness when it’s too much to be kind in person. Either way, being kind will help you cheer up, feel better deep inside, and confront negative thinking patterns at the very source.
Craig Mollins promotes a mindfulness approach to anger management at: http://MindfulnessAngerManagement.com.
Some days we just wake up feeling tired, unhappy and stressed out be the amount of work that needs to get done. But who said that the day that starts off badly, cannot get better? Consider trying a few (if not all) of these steps to brighten your days. Some are easy, some take more time, and all will put a bounce in your step.
1. Make your bed in the morning
Take two extra minutes in the morning to fluff your pillows and smooth your comforter in the morning, and you’ll relish the opportunity to come home to a tidy room and fresh bed to fall asleep in.
2. Write an email to an old friend.
With Facebook, instant messages and free telephone services like Skype, staying connected is easier than ever. Drop a brief line to an old friend and enjoy catching up little by little.
3. Splurge on a delicious meal.
Luxurious food and drink last for a couple of hours; the memories of a perfect meal are much more substantial. My recommendation: share your experience with someone special. No meal should be eaten alone.
4. Pet an animal.
Studies show that the joy from petting and playing with an animal has the same chemical effect on the brain as playing with your child: that means a big boost in happy energy. If you don’t have your own pet, head to a local animal shelter, or walk the neighbor’s dog.
5. Take time with your appearance.
It’s the ultimate confidence boost when your self-esteem is still in winter hibernation. Dress in clothes that make you feel good, get a haircut, shave, or spritz yourself with something that smells really good. (The best part: you still feel good even if there is no one around to see you!)
6. Start a long-term project.
The hardest part of tackling a huge project is starting it. When end results seem so far away, it’s hard to get motivated to start and to see it through. Whether it’s as small as updating your entire iTunes account with album art or as important as getting out of credit card debt, doing one small thing every day will show big results in the long term. As a bonus, you’ll feel proud that you made the first steps!
7. Prepare for your day the night before.
Have a few extra minutes before you go to sleep? Do one or two small thing that will make your morning scramble a little easier. Pack your lunch, lay out your outfit, blow dry your hair, organize any work supplies. Rather than running around to make it to work on time, you can sit back and enjoy a cup of coffee.
8. Give yourself the chance to laugh.
Watch a comedy, browse some YouTube videos, call up a hilarious friend, or go read through some old Sunday funnies.
9. Save something to look forward to.
Instant gratification can be very satisfying, but there is a reason why your birthday is so special: it only happens once a year. Plan on something to look forward to, be it a weekly podcast, a concert a few months away, a family trip, or extravagant holiday plans.
10. Share something with someone.
Joy is best when split between more than one person (there is a reason women love shopping in pairs). Cook a big meal for a group of close friends or gather a few pals to go on a hike.
11. Get outside.
Now that the sun is shining, it’s time to soak up all the Vitamin D you’ve been missing for the past five months. Get up, get out, and enjoy the fresh air – even if it’s just for a quick walk on your lunch break. But remember to bring a couple of layers: spring is known for its showers.
12. Rock out.
A life without music is really no life at all. Pump up the volume and start getting jiggy. Hint: the more bass the better.
13. Eat breakfast for once.
And I don’t mean a Pop Tart. I mean something with some nutritional value that will jump start your day, boost your mind and body, and get you raring to go.
14. Be really nice to yourself.
Give yourself all the compliments you deserve.
15. Be even nicer to others.
You know how good it feels to receive an unexpected compliment. A good rule to live by: people are nicest to people who are nice.
16. Smile. A lot.
It’s science: the more you smile – even if there is no reason to do it- the better your mood.
17. Get exercise.
Even gentle exercise burns calories and releases mood-enhancing endorphins. Whether you’re training for a marathon or taking a quick walk down to the mail box, your whole day will feel brighter when you start moving.
18. Help someone every day.
It doesn’t have to be a commitment to the Peace Corps, but committing yourself to being available and helpful is both a personal mood booster and the opportunity to make a difference. It could be as simple as offering to grab your coworker a cup of coffee on your trip to Starbucks, or as involved as supporting a child in another country.
No one has the perfect day every day. But working to change your outlook on life and enjoying the small stuff is a great way to improve your attitude!
Emma is a writer who works with Creditnet.com, a service which works to help struggling consumers find credit cards for bad credit, and guides them to smart, responsible spending.
In society today, it’s highly noticed that people have a desire to bond and be loved in a relationship. Most likely, a lot of people have visions of what they want to have in a true relationship. Some people desire to have a close friendship with another person, others desire to begin with dating so that it can lead to marriage.
With these different desires, most people don’t know if it’s possible to ask what they want to have in a relationship. Can their possibly of asking the universe their desire become as a reality?
In why most people ask this in their mind, either because they have hurt so much by previous relationships in the past, or have been told that they shouldn’t deserve to have wealth, successful, or anything!
Or sometimes, some people have probably asked the universe, but wasn’t specific by what they want to have in a relationship, and it ended up in disappointment! This actually leads to why it’s so important to be specific to the universe of what one want to have in relationship.
For example, a person who says to the universe, “I desire to have a date in my life so that I can marry that individual! I want marriage now! I desire an individual who looks pretty! ”
Maybe days, months, or years later, that pretty individual shows up! At the beginning, it might seem exciting! Then too, that person begins to get to know that individual, he or she begins to be excited!
As the months pass by, the person wants to know that individual on the deeper level, but doesn’t want to open up and just want to take in the relationship! Most likely down the road, that person realizes and thinks, “Why did I meet this individual in the first place? That individual doesn’t match what I desire to have in a relationship! This individual is always a taker! I thought I asked for my desire! ”
Later on, the person is disappointed and hurt by relationship! It sometimes leads that person to cut off the previous individual and find somebody new in their life!
My own life story:
In my own life, I’ve had failed relationships in my past. This was in dating and friendships! But the area of where my failed relationships came from, it was trying to develop close friendships, which I was hurt and disappointed! I developed a very negative mindset from those previous relationships! I complained until the cows came home, which it was from past hurts!
Not long ago in 2010, I discovered about asking the universe of what you want in a relationship. I did that step, which is asked, believed, and received! These things from what I discovered in the book called “the secret” which changed my thinking and life! Today, I am more positive person now then years ago thanks the secret.
Besides, Even though I did those things, around March of 2010, I was in another close friendship. Yes, I got hurt, disappointed, and had to cut it off! Out of the mist of that relationship, I didn’t focus on my failure from that relationship! I started to learn from it , and get to the root of the problem so I can fix it!
In addition, I learned and strongly realized that I wasn’t being specific in details to the universe! My revelations is to first ask and be specific in details, after that focus on the joy of that person coming and what it will be like, and receive on what I want to have in a close friendship!
Right now, I put those things into effect so that the universe can bring it into manifestation! Even though some feelings of my previous relationship come up, but I don’t give it ground at all! I focus on the new right now! Even though that friend has not arrived yet, but I can still feel joy of it!
What do you mean by being specific in details?
For example, a person who speaks to the universe, “ I desire to have a close friendship with a person! I desire that individual! to not degrade me! A friend who will always call and be there for me! A friend whom I can connect with! A friend who have my best interest! A friend whom I can trust with my secrets! A friend whom I can trust, which that individual can trust also! A friend who I can tell any thing! A friend who is not trifling! A friend who doesn’t have a bad attitude! A friend who strives for humility! A friend who has a great heart! A friend who understands! A friend who can tell me everything!”
After being specific, make it your focus, you will feel joy at this! Rather you desire marriage, a close friendship, or a date; envision that it’s arrived!
Where your focus is at, that’s when your faith begins to be at work! It might take time to feel it, but it takes focus and act if you receive it now!
Therefore, the universe reacts to un-wavering faith and what a person strongly feels inwardly! In other words, you will get what you are feeling! What you feel is what you attract in your life!
It’s a great time to be specific to the universe and concentrate on the desire that you want to have in a relationship! Never believe that you won’t have a successful relationship, everything that’s impossible, is possible!
Thank you so much for reading this post!
This guest post was contributed by Tyler J. Logan who is the founder and owner of self-help enrichment, which his blog is at http://enlightened32.blogspot.com. He writes on personal development, self-help, and glimpses of life’s situations!
“Wherever a person turns they can find someone who needs them.”
~Albert Schweitzer (adapted).
Appreciative systems are so much more powerful than depreciative systems are, particularly with regard to the world of relationships. They say “you catch more flies with honey than with vinegar.”
Positivity works much better.
The exhibition of the appreciative mindset is simply the focal use of accentuating the positive at every turn, as a way of affirmation and for growth.
For instance, in the business world, instead of doing Strengths-Weaknesses-Opportunities-Threats (SWOT) analyses, we can do Strengths-Opportunities-Aspirations-Results (SOAR) analyses. There are many other Appreciative Inquiry (AI) techniques.
But it’s the personal application we’re interested in right here; to become more positive influences (and influencers) within our world.
The Personal Approach
At this level we’re making a commitment to grow only in positive directions. We’re taking all the negative ‘stuff’ that comes into our shovels and reducing it for the minable positive – the rich commodifiable ore of transformation – to us and our worlds.
There is plenty in this world with which to draw appreciative energy from. In fact, there are so much of both i.e. also the depreciative, negative aspects of life. If we stay negative, at least two bad things happen:
1. Our effect is nullified.
2. We become miserable.
It always depends on us and our chosen focus.
When we’re stuck depreciatively, and we are dissatisfied with our results in life, we can just as easily shift to the positive, stronger mindset.
Exhibiting the Mindset of the Strong
Strong people don’t pick off opportunities to be critical or negative; they look for the positive.
The strong don’t need to delve into things that won’t be beneficial. Life is far too short for them to do this. They only want to maximise the opportunities to do the best they can with their time.
Exhibiting this appreciative mindset is a blessing not only for the world around us, but for us – little ole us -as well, for we’re infused with blessing from deep within when we see the affect we have on our world, and particularly our closest relationships.
“Appreciation is a wonderful thing.
It makes what is excellent in others belong to us as well.”
There’s no room for envy or petty jealousy with a willful appreciation. It swells our own world on the back of others’.
Then at last we see that others are never a threat to us – even more skilled others. The moment of appreciation is the moment of disarmament. How appreciation often boomerangs. All things are ours!
Our Role in Life – to Encourage Through Appreciation
Connecting back with the quote at top, we see now how important it is to accept a role in life to encourage others – for in this, not only are others built up in ways they need, but we too are built up, spiritually, in God.
Appreciation – it’s a weird but wonderful spiritual science!
Steve Wickham is a Registered Safety Practitioner (BSc, FSIA, RSP[Australia]) and a qualified, unordained Christian minister (GradDipBib&Min). His blogs are at: http://epitemnein-epitomic.blogspot.com/ and http://inspiringbetterlife.blogspot.com/
Write a list of all of the things you are grateful for right now. This isn’t always an easy task when we have been depressed or negative for so long but there are always things to be grateful for whether it is that you have food to eat or limbs to move. For more lasting results, decide that everyday, you will make a note of at least one thing you are grateful for. Writing these down will have the added impact of providing a reference to look back on when your attitude needs a boost.
2. Everything Happens for a Reason
Everything, I mean EVERYTHING that happens, happens for a reason. If you begin to evaluate every situation that challenges you and look at how it could be a benefit rather than a detriment to you, you will begin to change your attitude. If you are stuck in traffic, perhaps it is because it is causing you to avoid an accident you may otherwise have had. If you lost a job, maybe it is because you couldn’t have a new opportunity present itself until you did, or maybe there is a valuable lesson you need to learn from that job loss. Every situation can be looked at from two perspectives, the positive and the negative. If you practice finding the positive reason for everything, you will change your attitude about everything.
3. RAKS – Random Acts of Kindness.
When we take time away from our own crappy negative attitude to do something nice for someone else, it can really improve our attitude immediately. Buy someone you don’t know a cup of coffee, smile to a stranger in line, send a complement to someone you care about, send a thank you card for excellent service received.
I know this one sucks but it honestly has a major immediate response to a negative attitude. By getting our body to move, it releases chemicals in our brains that are much needed mood enhances. Even dancing counts so have some fun with it and dance to some great music right away!
5. Celebrate your successes
Think of all of the things you have been successful doing in your life. Just like the gratitude, you can start small, however, this is not the time to “ya, but” yourself. Take full credit for everything you have done and then celebrate! Really celebrate. Put on some great music, jump up and down, party like you just won the lottery! Success can come in many shapes and sizes from graduating from school, buying a house, starting a business to exercising today, eating healthy today, getting up on time today.
6. Watch, read or listen to someone inspiring
Seeing where others have come from helps us to realize that our lives aren’t so bad or that we can do it too. Find a favorite video or source of inspiration and watch it now for immediate attitude shift and regularly for permanent attitude shift.
Humor, much like exercise can cause the release of chemicals within our brains and help us to focus on something other than our negative attitude. Even the most humorless people can get benefit from laughing out loud.
We are all amazing individuals and have every right to have a positive attitude. These tips are easy to implement and can result in immediate benefits as well as foster lasting change. If more of us can have a positive attitude, the world will be a better place!
Nicole Bandes guides people through the road blocks of life and assists them to detour around the negative thoughts and beliefs that are holding them back. If you are looking for a Personal GPS Navigation system for your own life, contact Nicole through her website at http://www.NicoleBandes.com.
Have you ever said thanks to god for anything? How was the feeling?
We feel much fulfilled while we say thank you because this makes us feel that we got something we needed. It also makes opposite person feel that what he or she gave to us is valuable.
God gave us this wonderful life and we should be thankful for the same. We pray to god for the things we want but we never say thanks for what we already have. Even if we say thanks it would be only once or twice. God gave us many gifts which we enjoy every day so we should be thankful every day.
“We often take for granted the very things that most deserve our gratitude.” – Cynthia Ozick
Think this way how will you feel when in a train you give your birth to someone standing and that person without saying thanks sits on your place. You will definitely feel bad that you gave your valuable place to someone who didn’t value it. I am not saying god will feel bad if you won’t say thanks but I am saying that you will feel good if you say thanks.
If you want to be happy then you have to release all your negative thinking by replacing it with positive thinking. Gratitude will remove all negative energy from your mind because you will start focusing on things you have instead of what you don’t have.
“Happiness is itself a kind of gratitude.” - Joseph Wood Krutch
All the self help author suggest you to practice gratitude daily and I am no exception to that. Gratitude is the first thing I do in the morning. I say thanks to god for my life, health, my wife, my parents, my friends, knowledge, strength, opportunities and many more things. I feel fulfilled while practicing Gratitude. I feel like I am the luckiest guy in the world that I have many reasons to celebrate every day of my life. Gratitude also helps me to focus on my goals. It makes me realize that if I can achieve what I have then I can definitely achieve my other goals. It gives me amazing confidence. Gratitude actually prepares you to fight against all the odds and makes you happy.
“Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow.”
You can prepare your gratitude journal where you can write things for which you are thankful. Every day you can add your list. It is not that we should be thankful for big things or events in our life. Small things or events also give you immense happiness. I say thank you even when I get a place in a bus or train. I also write everyday in my gratitude journal. I have also kept reminders in my mobile which rings at every three hours and I start thinking of events or things or people I am thankful for. Promise yourself that you will think of five things you feel gratitude for and I guarantee that you will find ten things.
Start Gratitude today, say thanks to god, to universe and even to your parents. In search of things we don’t have with us we forget to enjoy things we have with us.
“Let us be grateful to people who make us happy; they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom.” – Marcel Proust
At the end I want to dedicate a poem from an unknown author.
Be thankful that you don’t already have everything you desire,
If you did, what would there be to look forward to?
Be thankful when you don’t know something
For it gives you the opportunity to learn.
Be thankful for the difficult times.
During those times you grow.
Be thankful for your limitations
Because they give you opportunities for improvement.
Be thankful for each new challenge
Because it will build your strength and character.
Be thankful for your mistakes
They will teach you valuable lessons.
Be thankful when you’re tired and weary
Because it means you’ve made a difference.
It is easy to be thankful for the good things.
A life of rich fulfillment comes to those who are
also thankful for the setbacks.
GRATITUDE can turn a negative into a positive.
Find a way to be thankful for your troubles
and they can become your blessings.
by Samir Kunvaria
For more articles on self improvement please visit http://www.samirworld.com
One of the most powerful principles hidden in the goldmine of knowledge called Think and Grow Rich is what I’ve named “The Pyramid Principle.” Now, I’m not talking about some mystical kind of pyramid power. And I’m not suggesting you go sleep in a pyramid or put a bunch of pyramids around your house or anything like that. No, this is a pyramid of some principles that will create incredible power.
The first chapter in Think and Grow Rich after the introduction contains the very first principle, and it’s the principle that Napoleon Hill calls “Desire.”
Hill taught that, “Desire is the beginning of all achievement.” In countless references throughout the book he describes it as a “white hot desire.” White hot!
That’s a term we don’t often see. But when he introduced the book in 1937 many people in the world were employed in these large factories where big kilns and big fires burned. A hot fire, the hottest fires-had a whitish color. Thus white hot!
So what he was trying to communicate in words of the day was that you needed to have the hottest desire that you could possibly create. That’s the first fundamental principle in whatever it is that you want to achieve.
The second principle of the pyramid also has a chapter named after it – Faith. Or, as some people might understand that term: Belief. Belief and Faith are first cousins. They basically mean the same thing.
Napoleon says Faith is the most powerful force on earth and you find references to that throughout all of the ancient wisdom. If you read the Christian Bible there is a passage in there about faith. It says that faith the size of a mustard seed is enough to move mountains. Since a mustard seed is a very small seed, the message is it doesn’t take much faith to do some amazing things.
He goes on to say that these first two principles, desire and faith, must be present to have any type of success at all. You’re not likely to move forward without both of those.
So you start with those two principles and then you add just one more. The principle of “Action” or what Hill calls “Decision.” With that the pyramid is complete and virtually anything you can imagine can be achieved by using its power.
First, you use the principles in the order presented here:
(1) Desire (2) Faith (3) Action.
If you start trying to take action before desire, before faith is present, then you’re not going to act very long. In fact, your actions will be very weak because you won’t have a full commitment.
Now imagine a pyramid for a moment. On the bottom right hand of the base place the principle Desire. On the bottom left hand of the base place the principle Faith. And at the top of the pyramid place the principle Action.
Begin with Desire and once you’ve identified what it is, move to the left and begin working on your Faith in achieving that Desire. Now move to the top and take some Action — any kind of positive action toward your Desire.
And here’s why taking any kind of action is so important. After studying 25,000 failures he determined at the top of the list of their reasons for failure was the lack of decision, a lack of action.
But I’m sure you’ve also experienced as I have at times the feeling of inertia. So here’s a little secret for taking action. It’s based on Newton’s Law of Motion that you might remember from Science class. Newton found that a body at rest tends to remain at rest, while a body in motion tends to remain in motion. As long as you have inertia, you’re likely to continue with that inertia. But if you can create any kind of motion, any kind of action at all, you’re likely to continue in action.
So find some small action you can take toward your desire. Any kind of action counts. Maybe it’s just making an exploratory phone call or doing some web research.
That Action will produce some additional Desire (you move to the bottom right of the pyramid again) and you re-start the cycle. Each time you complete the cycle both your Faith and your Desire will grow. That’s why the Pyramid Principle is so powerful — it rapidly creates a “white hot desire.”
Once you get the Pyramid Principle started it takes on a life of it’s own. Each additional action feeds more desire. More desire feeds more belief. More belief feeds more action. And on and on.
That’s why it’s so powerful and that’s why this may be the most important “secret” to be discovered in Think and Grow Rich.
You can see a free video of best-selling author Vic Johnson teaching on Think and Grow Rich at YouTube. For details on how to claim a free copy of Think and Grow Rich go to http://www.AsAManThinketh.net/think.htm.
Whether you believe it or not, positive attitude is not just a “soft skill” – it is a significant factor in achievement. Most dysfunction in business and personal achievement can be traced back to a root cause: ineffective thinking habits! That does not have to be the case for you, though. You can learn to manage your habits of thought and directly affect your level of performance and achievement.
Are you ready?
The first step in harnessing ineffective thinking habits and moving toward growth is becoming aware; for with an enhanced level of awareness, you can make choices that promote positive attitudes. It sounds so simple, but effective change always begins with awareness. People will choose to change when they are aware that the change will serve their best interest!
What is attitude?
An attitude can best be defined as a habit of thought. You naturally develop certain patterns of thinking about the people and world around you. These thinking habits can be conditioned and patterned by parents, friends, culture, environment, experiences, and circumstances.
If you do not assume personal responsibility for developing your own effective, positive attitudes, the world around you will shape your attitudes with average thinking, which is usually negative and unproductive. As a result, you become a victim of your own ineffective thinking patterns.
Every thought you entertain during the day is either positive or negative. There is no in-between or neutral thought. Every moment of your thinking pattern during the day either serves your growth or serves your stagnation.
Most people describe their attitude as neutral – neither positive nor negative. But everything in nature is either growing or decaying, and the same is true in business. There can be no neutral positions. You and your thoughts are alive and dynamic. The thinking patterns that determine your attitudes either work to bring about your growth or work to bring about your decline. It truly is that simple!
Fear is the enemy of positive thoughts
Everyone is challenged by the emotion of fear. Fear is a natural, human emotion that instinctively causes us to respond with a defensive reflex to any perceived threat. If left unmanaged, your attitudes will be controlled by the emotion of fear.
For example, if you set a goal that requires you to do new things, these new activities will seem uncomfortable at first. That is normal, but you may instinctively respond with fearful feelings because the new activities are uncomfortable. This leads you to psychologically interpret those fearful feelings as “risks” or “dangers,” while in fact these new activities may not be dangerous at all.
We all have a basic fear of risks and the unknown. This response is natural, yet absolutely counterproductive to achievement. All achievement requires you to grow beyond your current status or position. You cannot possibly expect to grow and not confront new activities, skills, and responsibilities. If you allow your natural responses of fear to direct your thinking, you personally sabotage your opportunities for achievement by choosing to quit or not to act.
In fact, most of the people who fail to achieve did not fail at all. They simply allowed fear to control their thinking and decided to quit. The fear of risk and the unknown were stronger than their desire to achieve.
How do I conquer the fear?
The best way to get over this natural inclination to fear the unknown is to plan for it. Have a game plan that you can depend on to start fostering a positive attitude. It will start off feeling forced, but over time it will become a habit. Positive habits inevitably lead to positive outcomes!
To get you started, practice the following five steps that will help you develop the mental toughness needed to face the challenge of your natural instinct of fear… and to win!
Step #1 – Maintain positive expectancy
You must keep the vision of your desired, future achievement in the forefront of your mental focus. Achievement is 80% mental! You will first accomplish your dreams in your mind before you ever realize them materially. Build a vision of your future that is stronger than your fears, and fill your thinking patterns with positive expectancy, which actually attracts the circumstances that you will need to realize your achievement.
Step #2 – Manage your daily choices according to your goals, not your feelings
Managing consistent, positive expectancy is difficult because you never feel the same, physically or emotionally, every single day of the week. If you only work on your goals when you feel good, your actions will be too inconsistent to produce results.
My long-time friend and mentor, Paul J. Meyer, would say, “Follow through with your daily plans regardless of circumstances or what other people say, think, or do.” In other words, your dreams for the future must be strong enough to keep you following through with those plans on a daily basis, no matter how you feel.
Step #3 – Aggressively manage your positive relationships
Your associations with others will either promote your growth or deter it. The thinking habits of those with whom you associate affect your thinking. You must, therefore, foster relationships with people who inspire and influence your growth. In the same vein, aggressively avoid those who impose their negative beliefs or attitudes on you. You cannot engage in negative relationships without being negatively affected, so you must manage your personal relationships aggressively!
Step #4 – Live in the moment!
Life comes to each of us one day at a time. You cannot live in the future any more than you can change the past. The past is gone and tomorrow does not exist. Many people never succeed in their life plans because they are always saying, “I’ll start tomorrow.” Tomorrow turns into next week, next month, and next year. Some call it procrastination, but in reality, it is nothing more than a comfort zone.
You procrastinate on your personal growth because it is simply more comfortable to wait. Learn to live right now! Change your thinking about waiting and develop the attitude of urgency in applying effective actions daily.
Step #5 – Believe
Faith – being sure of what you hope for and certain of what you do not see – is a spiritual term. It makes no sense intellectually and can be understood only from a spiritual perspective. Regardless of your religious or non-religious position, belief is vital in your growth and achievement, and you cannot understand belief without an understanding of faith.
There will be times in your achievement journey when quitting or giving up will seem like the only alternatives. At these times, it will take the strength of your faith to prevail. You must believe that you can achieve, for it is the spark that sustains you.
Putting it all together
Armed with a new level of awareness of how and why negative attitudes are instinctive, you now understand why a positive attitude development program is vital to your growth, success, and achievement.
You must develop a positive, productive attitude. It will never happen naturally, but just because it is not natural does NOT mean you cannot do it! Manage you thoughts and attitudes everyday, conquer the fear, and get ready to ACHIEVE!
Inspiring genuine growth and achievement in leaders, David Byrd has 30 years of experience working with top business executives and their organizations. He is a master of effective leadership and works closely with leaders worldwide to maximize their leadership potential. For more information about The Next-Level Achievement System® or David’s book, Achievement – A Proven System For Next Level Growth, visit http://www.authorsup.com/David-Byrd.
Your mood, in a significant way, is your life. Your predominant mood establishes the tone for your life. If your mood is predominantly happy, content, or an otherwise positive mood, chances are you’ll say you’re having a good life. And if your mood is predominantly negative, well…
What mood are you in right now?
How did you come to be in this mood?
Do you ever wonder where your moods come from?
Do you experience being able to make a choice about them, or do they just seem to happen to you?
The good news is, research in positive psychology and related fields is proving that you can take control of your mood, learn to be more optimistic, even happier, and thus create a better life for yourself.
There are three basic ways moods happen: without our knowing; when something happens, be it something good, or something bad; and because we chose to do something about a mood, and deliberately changed it.
When you wake up in the morning, what mood do you find yourself in? Do you tend to notice the mood, or is your first awareness a thought like, “Oh no, is it time to get up already?” Or “Uh oh, I forgot to….” And now those will get you in a mood, won’t they?
When you start your day with “Oh no,” or “Uh oh,” the sour mood that creates can have a powerful negative impact on your day, and on your overall well-being. If you don’t intervene, you’ve just set the stage for many other things to go wrong, feel wrong, and create stress throughout your day.
Likewise, if you start your day with gratitude for the sunrise, or appreciation that you woke up before your alarm, or excitement about what’s on the agenda for the day and the possibilities, that mood will also likely impact your entire day, and your well-being, this time for the positive.
So how can you take charge of your moods, and become a predominantly happier person?
1. Catch Yourself in the Act
Many of us have habits of thinking that put us in a bad mood. Self-criticism, worrying, regretting – all of these are thought loops we run, like an old CD we forgot to take out of the stereo, without realizing we can choose something else. The next time you find yourself doing one of these negative bad mood thought habits, STOP. Don’t beat yourself up for it (that would just be more of the same). Simply remove that old CD, and put in a new one. You could literally turn on some music and listen to that rather than thinking. You might try telling yourself you’re not going to waste another minute on that, and then think about something else. Anything would be progress from continuing to indulge those old negative thought habits.
2. Focus on Positive Thoughts
You can create new, positive thought habits, put some good new CDs on your player, by creating a discipline for yourself of thinking positive thoughts. For example, start a gratitude journal, and focus at least once a day on things you’re grateful for. Get in the habit of acknowledging and appreciating people. Let yourself vision your own positive future. Any time you spend in positive thinking is time well spent!
One simple way to refocus your thinking is to ask yourself (and others, by the way) questions that help focus on the positive, such as: *What am I grateful for? *What am I proud of? *What am I happy about? *Who loves me? *Who do I love? *How have I contributed?
3. Change Your Language
Your words, both spoke out loud and spoken to yourself in your thoughts, have great power to influence your mood. Phrases like “I can’t…” as in, “I can’t afford that” will bring you down. Replace that with, “I am preparing to…” Or even “I choose to…” and notice the difference you feel.
Every time you describe something from your past as if it were happening now (even if the last time it happened was just a moment ago) you are bringing yourself down. There is great power in leaving the past behind, beginning with your language, and being optimistic about the possibility that the future may be different. The simple phrase, “I used to…” or “Up until now I…” can help you to change your mood, and your behavior, to a whole new possibility.
4. Don’t Just Stand There, DO Something!
One of the most powerful and simple ways to change your mood is to take action. A simple shift in your posture (look up, stand tall, chin up) will lift your mood. Moving your body, i.e. exercise or dancing, will elevate your mood, even if it’s not strenuous. Play upbeat music, and watch what happens to your mood. Or, sing a song yourself!
5. Take It On and Feel the Difference
You can retrain your predominant mood by making some or all of these suggestions standard daily practices. Start your day by reciting or writing what you’re grateful for. Before you start working, and throughout the day, stand up, look up, even jump up, and pick up your mood. Acknowledge and appreciate others at every opportunity. Play music in the background as you work, or clean, or cook. Exercise every day. Breath deeply and enjoy the moment. One of my favorites – hold my hands under the water and enjoy how it feels each time I wash up in the bathroom – quick, easy, uplifting.
Play with it, find your favorites, and lift your mood. It’s up to you to take charge of the quality of your life.
Dinyah Rein has been coaching people to succeed at their personal and life goals for more than 25 years. If you’re ready to move powerfully forward toward your own goals,sign up for her weekly newsletter at http://coachdinyah.com
Happiness is our birthright. When we see a small baby we instinctively squeal with delight at his or her first smile. Our natural human instinct is to lean is towards happiness, but as time passes and life’s experiences unfold, we can sometimes lose our mojo. When that happens it can be hard to retain our sense of perspective and we can fall into the habit of negative thinking. Maybe money’s tight, or your relationship has ended, or you had a row with your best friend.
No matter what has happened to wipe that smile off your face, you must try to do whatever you can to define in a healthy, life affirming way, what happiness means to you. And I don’t mean eating another bar of chocolate or having another plate of macaroni cheese!
Here’s 15 steps to happiness you can start on today that will bring a smile to your face, if not get you laughing out loud!
1. Avoid negative people.
I don’t really need to expand on this one too much do I? You know who they are, and you know how they make you feel, and you know you need to avoid them. If you can’t avoid them altogether then at least keep them at arms length, and minimise your contact with them. Stick with the positive ones.
2. Stand in front of a mirror, look into your eyes and smile.
Tell yourself how wonderful you are and that you deserve to be happy. Do this a few times a day, even if it feels silly. This works wonders to lift your spirits!
3. Avoid wearing black clothes, and inject some colour into your wardrobe.
We tend to wear black when we want to make ourselves invisible and blend in with the walls (unless you’re a vampire or Count Dracula?) No but really, wearing brighter colours will cheer you up. Get some pinks to feel more feminine, blue to feel calm and orange to get that spark of creativity flowing!
4. Do some exercise and get some air into those lungs!
We all know that regular activity benefits us enormously, both mentally and physically, even if it’s just for 20 minutes a day. So take a brisk walk, run up and down your stairs a few times, do star jumps during the commercial breaks when you’re watching TV. This will ensure you feel more energised and help you stay trim and fit, which will in turn have a knock-on positive effect on your mood.
5. Put on music that makes you happy, or with lyrics that cheer you up.
Try Bach’s Brandenburg Concerto’s or Mozart’s Ein Kleine Nachtmusik. If you prefer mainstream music then try Jimmy Cliff “I Can See Clearly Now” or Michael Jackson “The Way You Make Me Feel”, “My Love” by Justin Timberlake or even Rick Astley’s “Never Gonna Give You Up” to name but a few. Anything that’s definitely going to put a smile on your face.
6. Watch comedy shows, funny movies or go to a comedy night with your friends.
Happiness is the aim here and what could be better than laughing?
7. Decide to be happy.
Habits are formed very easily and if we simply decide to be happy then it will become a habit. Aristotle said “We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence then is not an act, but a habit.”
8. Say yes to your dreams.
All too often we want a better lifestyle, or a more fulfilling relationship, or a slimmer body, but we look at what we have now,which may be a far cry from the ideal life of our dreams, and in our frustration we kill the dream off before it’s even started to develop. Instead, let the seed of the dream take root, and you will find that in a very short time, things will start happening that will help turn that dream a reality. You might meet someone wonderful, or you might get a great new job offer, and this will happen simply because you said yes to your dreams and allowed them to unfold.
9. Fake it till you make it!
This is one of my personal favourites. It doesn’t mean if I act like a billionaire then I’m necessarily going to become one, but it does mean that my confidence is boosted, I’ll stand taller and feel elevated. All of these are going to make me feel happier, and I’ll give off a happier vibe, and as a result I’ll attract positive experiences and positive people. Cultivate an internal dialogue that’s always geared towards happiness.
This is one of the best and most effective happiness tips I can give you. Try it now!
11. Bloom where you’re planted.
3 years ago, I had to move 200 miles away from my friends, my parents and my partner, and I hated it. My entire support network was gone overnight. I did everything I could to avoid putting roots down in my new home. I kept telling myself it was a temporary move, and that I’d be back before I knew it. And as might be expected, I got more and more miserable. So I decided to heed my own advice, and try to make the best of it. I joined a gym, I started to socialise more, made lots of new friends and now I know that wherever I find myself geographically, I can be happy mentally. And I am!
12. See the silver lining, because every cloud has one.
If a relationship has ended, consider the reasons it’s ended and be glad because now you can attract the person who is more suited to you – someone who wants to be with you, rather than the person who was happier with his friends. Someone who can’t wait to spend the rest of his life with you, rather than the person who hesitates or runs in the opposite direction when togetherness is mentioned. When you’re sick and your body isn’t as healthy as it was, use the time convalescing to review your lifestyle, your diet, and fitness routine. This will give you a renewed focus and allow your body to heal from a mentally positive perspective.
13. Have faith.
Believe and have faith in a Higher Power, whether that’s God, Allah, the Jedi Master or The Universal Great Lord, and trust that your happiness matters to that Higher Power. This will enhance your sense of value, as well as renewing your confidence and allowing you to relax into a happier frame of mind. Someone else has got your back, and you’re always safe.
Contribute to the community and help others in an area that means something to you. Run the marathon for charity or volunteer at a local charity shop. The beneficial attributes here are self explanatory.
15. Remember tomorrow is another day!
You get another chance to do it all over again, and the best part is you can improve on what you did today, tweak a few things here and there, and relax – it’s never going to be perfect. But you’ve done your best, and that’s all you ever need to do.
Mumtaz Hussain believes passionately that every man, woman and child always deserves to feel fantastic about themselves. She is a single mum of two and she has successfully created a fabulous life for herself and her children. Find out more about me and get your free gift at http://todaymumtaz.blogspot.com