It can also make you less susceptible to the negative effects of stress on your body and mind.
Being positive is about far more than finding the silver lining or avoiding “bad vibes.”
Positivity is about seeking gratitude, humor and joy, even when life is difficult.
Whether you’re a naturally optimistic person or not, staying positive in the face of adversity can feel daunting at times.
The tips below will help you use your experience and perspective to seek out the good in life, no matter your circumstances.
1. Take time to be grateful.
“It’s a funny thing about life, once you begin to take note of the things you are grateful for, you begin to lose sight of the things that you lack.”—Germany Kent
Gratitude is one of the quickest paths to positivity. Even when things seem impossibly hard, there are probably still aspects of your life you’re grateful for.
A daily gratitude practice can help shift your thinking from what’s going wrong in your life to what’s going right.
Try writing down three simple things you’re grateful for each day.
Begin with whatever is easiest for you: your health, your family or friends, your home or your work. Focus on any opportunities in life that you appreciate or comforts that you enjoy, however small.
As you continue this practice, you may find it easier and easier to feel gratitude more deeply and widely in your life.
2. Create a positive environment.
Have you ever felt yourself being sucked in by the excitement of a crowd?
Studies show that emotions, positive or negative, can be contagious. The longer we spend with others in the grip of strong emotions, the more likely we are to reflect those emotions ourselves.
Because of this, you may find it easier to stay positive when surrounded with positive people and media sources.
Seek out a community of positive, pro-age people who support the mindset you’re trying to cultivate.
Look for positive stories and messages and share them with others.
When supporting friends or family members in difficult times, maintain healthy boundaries that allow you to prioritize your own well-being as well as theirs.
Before and after spending time with struggling loved ones, be sure to refill your own cup with gratitude practices and self-care. This allows you to show up for those you love without being dragged down into negativity.
3. Keep it real.
Have you heard of toxic positivity?
This superficial form of positivity often involves disregarding criticism or silencing people who are struggling under the pretext of avoiding negativity or “bad vibes.”
Besides being unhelpful for those around you, toxic positivity can be just as harmful as toxic negativity.
Instead, practice forms of positivity that acknowledge pain and suffering while seeking gratitude, humor, joy and hope for the future.
Real positivity doesn’t avoid suffering. It helps you move through difficult emotions rather than denying them.
4. Be kind to yourself first.
Critical self-talk is one way that people, and women in particular, get stuck in a cycle of negativity.
The messages we constantly hear about our appearance, our age and our value can wear on us. Over time it can begin to affect our self-esteem.
Be kind to yourself first by embracing your body and your age. Consider adopting a pro-age mindset that helps you see yourself as you truly are… valuable and beautiful at every age and stage of life.
If you find yourself engaging in critical self-talk, try questioning the source of these thoughts. You may find it’s not a belief you actually hold but instead a societal belief you can choose to release.
5. Framing and language matters
Our language and framing have a bigger effect on how we feel than we may realize.
How we speak about our circumstances can change the way we feel about them.
This is especially true when it comes to affirmations, which many people use to motivate themselves toward a goal they’d like to achieve.
When choosing an affirmation, use positive language that focuses on what you will do—not what you’re worried you can’t do.
For example, positive language and reframing turns a challenge like, “I'm so busy, I’ll never get this done,” into an affirmation like, “Today, I’ll take the steps I can, knowing that it’s good enough.”
Reframing allows you to focus on what you will do to achieve your goal, rather than an outcome which may or may not be outside of your control.
Adding more positivity to your life makes every day a little brighter. We hope these tips will help you invite more positivity into your own rich, interesting life.
Tell us: What do you think of these tips? How do you invite more positivity into your life?
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