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“Having a positive mental attitude is asking how something can be done rather than saying it can’t be done.” – Bo Bennett.
Let’s admit it. It sometimes is just hard to stay positive. That’s okay because you can’t be happy all the time. But once you start being way more pessimistic than positive, it’s time to change this. You might be wondering how to be more positive? I’m going to help you with that in today’s blog post.
First of all, I have to admit I struggle with being positive from time to time too. It’s not that hard to be positive when everything in your life is going great. It starts getting tough when everything seems to go wrong.
Even though it’s totally fine to be sad, mad, lonely, or any other emotions you might feel at this moment, you don’t want to get stuck in this pessimistic mindset. In the end, being pessimistic all the time ruins your wellbeing and mental health.
I hear you thinking ‘but how am I supposed to handle tough situations? I can’t see any positivity in the situation!’ or ‘I can’t do anything about it because other people around me are pessimistic.’ Well, I’m going to tell you right here and right now how we’re going to make sure you approach every situation with positivity, without losing your true emotions & how you can change the pessimistic mindset into a positive mindset.
How To Be More Positive
1. Find the optimistic in a negative situation
This is definitely one of the simplest but most effective ways to create a more positive outlook has been to think optimistic and ask more positive questions. Ask yourself questions like this:
- What is one thing that is positive or good about this situation?
- What is one opportunity in this situation?
Normally I just got drawn into a full negative mood but even though the situation might suck, most of the time there is still something optimistic. For example, my anxiety during my Bachelor’s was horrible but because of that, I’ve met my best friend.
However, it’s okay if you first need some time to process the negative situation. Take your time to be sad or mad, trying to force optimistic thinking when you are still in an emotional mood usually doesn’t work that well. After your processed your first emotions and took a breath, it’s time to start looking for the positivity in the situation. It sounds tough, but I know you can do this!
2. Live in a positive environment
Let me explain how important this is. You might not even see this right now but the people around you, as well as the input you get from TV/the internet/magazines/series, have a huge influence on your mindset.
I’ve had people in my life who dragged me down, who made me feel like I was nothing, and what I did was bad or stupid. This made me insecure and pessimistic. Moreover, I still have to deal with this years and years later.
To be able to stay positive it is essential to have people in your life that support you and lift you up instead of dragging you down. So carefully consider who (or what) you let into your mind.
You can, for example, ask yourself:
- Who are the 3 most negative people I spend time with?
- What are the 3 of the most negative sources of information I spend time on?
Think about how you can start spending less time with one of those people or information sources this week. Getting these people or information out of your life will change so much! It sounds like a huge step and it is sometimes (what if someone in your family is negative, how do you drop them?) but always remember that your mental health is priority 1.
3. Don’t make a problem bigger than it actually is
My mom has this and thankfully, I have it way less than she does. However, it’s very easy to lose perspective, especially if you are stressed. And so a molehill can become a big and terrifying mountain in your mind. But we’re going to make this mountain way smaller by:
- Say stop. In your mind, shout “STOP!” or “NOPE, we are not going down that path again!” as soon as thoughts of this kind start to spin in your head.
- Breathe. Take a minute to breathe to get yourself down to earth again. Take a deep breath and try not to think about the huge mountains. Instead, watch the birds or listen to some calming music while you breathe.
- Refocus. Question your thoughts by talking to someone close to you and getting a more grounded perspective on the situation. Or simply ask yourself this to chill out: Will this matter in 5 years? Or even in 5 weeks?
4. Don’t let fears hold you back from doing what you want
I’ve had this many times and I still have this fear every now and then. The fear of leaving your comfort zone and start doing what you want. The fear of judgment or failure is sometimes so huge that we don’t want to leave our comfort zone. But as we all know, you don’t grow within your comfort zone and it’s probably not going to make you happy anyway.
Try to ask yourself what the worst thing is that could happen. Most of the time, the situation isn’t even that bad. Moreover, I always prepare myself for the worst-case scenario. This may sound stupid but if I feel prepared, I’m less stressed because I feel like I know what I need to do.
Take that chance, step out your comfort zone and you’ll thank me later!
5. Exercise regularly, eat and sleep well
I mean, this one might sound obvious but it truly is a big part of how you’re feeling. If you’re not sleeping well, eat junk food all the time, and don’t exercise changes are big that you’ll feel pessimistic.
Make sure to sleep around 7-8 hours every night, eat your vegetables and fruits and make sure to go to the gym every once in a while (or just take a walk more often, it’s your choice!). Because they do have a huge effect either way.
6. Learn to take criticism in a healthy way
One of the most common fears is the fear of criticism. It can hold people back from doing what they want in life. Because having negativity flowing out of someone’s mouth or email and it being about you can hurt. And being rejected can sting quite a bit. But if you want to take action on what you deep down want then criticism is pretty much unavoidable. So the key is learning to handle it in a healthier way. By doing so your fear of it will lessen and it will hurt less if you do get criticized. I usually use four steps when I get some criticism. Maybe they can help you out too:
- Step 1: Don’t reply right away. When you are angry, upset, or riled up then it is time to calm down a bit before you reply. Take at least a couple of deep breaths or a little time to process the message before you respond.
- Step 2: Really listen to the criticism. Try to remain open and level-headed and figure out how this message can help you. Ask yourself: Is there one thing I can learn from this criticism? Is there something here that I may not want to hear but could help me?
- Step 3: Remember that the criticism isn’t always about you. Some criticism is helpful. Some are simply attacks or someone lashing out because they are having a bad day, year, or job. To lessen the sting of such criticism – often really angry or overly critical in an unconstructive way – I try to be understanding. I think to myself that this person might not be feeling so good at the moment.
- Step 4: Reply or let go. No matter the content of for example an email I try to keep my reply level-headed and kind. I may add a question or two to get more specific feedback that is helpful. And if they don’t reply or I have simply gotten a nasty attack then it is time to delete it and to let that situation go.
7. If something still gets under your skin then know what to do
Sometimes something can still get under your skin and hurt you. Even if you use the steps above. Two things that have helped me with that challenge are:
- Let it out. Just letting that issue out into the light talking it over with someone close can be very helpful to see it for what it actually is. And to find a healthier perspective on the situation. My friends help me A LOT with just listening to me and give me advice!
- Improve your self-esteem. I have found over the years that with stronger self-esteem things drag me down less and they don’t ruin my day as much anymore. Negativity from others bounces off me much more often instead. When my self-esteem gets lower (like right now) I feel like I get way more easily sad and negative.
It also can be very smart to take a moment for yourself and do something you like, for example, an at home spa day! This can easily boost your mood.
I know this is a pretty different type of post on Beautymone but I want to include more wellness-related topics since I think it’s a very important part of feeling good about yourself. This is the first step when it comes to beauty in my opinion.
Let me know what you think about this type of blog post! Should I do this more often? Please leave a comment.