BBC News on 24th July carried a piece with the catchy title:
‘Uk Economy continues to contract’.
Headlines like this make great fodder for driving traffic to news sites, but do little for the mental well-being of your typical business owner. Also, if you had taken the time to read the article, you would have found that no real conclusions were drawn.
So since reporters won’t take the responsible line, you are faced with task of managing your own internal focus in spite of the endless buffeting you receive from the economic clairvoyants. The Philosopher James Allen stated:
‘Situations do not make a man. They reveal him’
We are not our circumstances, but the more we believe they define us the more they control us. We can literally undo our own better future by a consistent line of wrong thinking.
Some negatively will get through. It always will, but the key is what you choose to focus on consistently – remember, failure is a few errors repeated every day while success is a few positive actions repeated everyday.
We must choose to respond and not be made to react to the negative influences we encounter everyday. The following are 7 favourites of mine which I regularly use to push through down days and keep a more positive outlook on daily happenings.
1. Take news Sabbaticals
Our minds are like gardens. They need to be tended and cared for or the weeds take over. We need to watch closely the ideas and information we allow to take root, as both positivity and negativity can easily flourish here.
Don’t read or watch anything news related until very late on in your working day. If you can abstain completely you’ll see better results. You will find that your mind is clearer and you will find it much easier to remain on track.
2. Practice Consistent Goal Setting.
If you don’t know where you’re going you’re probably not going to get there. A strong set of goals paint a compelling picture of your desired future. If well defined they will pull you through the most difficult of times.
Its easier to get through dark days when we have something to look forward to. So make the practice of defining and then redefining your daily, weekly and yearly goals on a consistent basis.
3. Keep fit and well.
It has been said if you don’t make time for being healthy then you better make time for being ill. Exercising at least 20 minutes everyday will greatly increase your level of fitness and reduce your susceptibility to illness.
Exercise releases endorphins which make us feel good. So if you can fit in 20 minutes running or walking every morning you will find it easier to remain positive once the rigours of the day have begun.
You will also find that the time spent exercising is returned to you. You will need less sleep as you become healthier and your energy levels will stabilise throughout the day. Drink at least 2 litres of water everyday and settle for just one cup of fresh coffee.
4. Be thankful
Begin your day by taking 5 minutes to be thankful for what you already have and achieved. Think of your children, your family and friends and how truly blessed your are to have them in your life.
Be grateful for your pass successes and acknowledge their importance in making you who you are. Also be thankful for the past trials you have suffered – they have made you who you are today.
Most of all, be thankful that you have been born into a nation which affords you more opportunity than 98 percent of the population of the globe. Be thankful that you are you.
5. Watch the power of negative association
If your worst enemy was to poison your drink you would die. If your best friend accidently did the same it would make no difference if he was your best friend, you would still die from the poison.
Your level of mental positivity is the average of the 5 closet associations which you enjoy today. Never underestimate the power of a negative influence. Negative people can destroy your dreams and ambition. The problem is most negativity in our lives comes from those that are supposed to be loving and supporting us.
The solution is to limit your negative associations or better still remove them completely. It is hard to do but you must protect the well-being of your positive attitude.
6. Feed your mind.
If a void is left, a negative influence can rush into the gap. We must therefore consciously select what we focus on, or it will be selected for us by default.
Rather than reading and listening to negative news stories why not replace that time with more positive influences. Listen to your favourite music. Take a walk in the countryside with a portable mp3 player filled with your favourite business biographies.
What is important though, is that a conscious selection is made as to the direction of your focus.
7. Just Decide.
No Excuses, no pondering, just decide. Are you going to make the very best of your life and the opportunities it presents or are you going to make excuses?
This is a big responsibility but once taken you will feel a sense of relief. You are finally in control. Decide and commit to treading the future path you have designed for yourself.
Once you accept, these challenges will hurt but not cripple you. You will be quiet in the knowing that you are going to make it no matter what.
The next time you think of reading a headline witch catches your eye make a decision not to focus on it. Instead replace the time with one or more of the suggested positive activities listed above. I’d love to hear how you get on.
Mr Anthony Hartley Denton is author of the popular eBook ‘The Diamond Principles’ Coal face case studies to recession proof your business & survive a downturn. lick to http://www.the-diamond-principles.com for more information and your free chapter sample.