5 + 1 tips on how to think and stay positive

In an iconic scene in the movie Life of Brian several men singing “Always look on the bright side of life”. Long before the concept gained popularity, Monty Pythons made a perfect example of positive thinking. At the same time, they managed to make fun of it in an ingenious and hilarious way. Sure, thinking positively became some sort of a cliché over the years but that shouldn’t obscure its overall benefits.

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Several studies concluded that people who are generally more optimistic have significantly lower risk of serious illnesses like cancer, strokes, heart and respiratory diseases. The interesting thing is that scientists yet don’t know why this is happening. One theory claims that a positive attitude towards life helps people cope better with stressful situations, which subsequently reduces negative effects of stress on our bodies.

And obviously, positive thinkers are generally happier and enjoy life more. So, optimism can substantially improve your life and the good thing is that there are ways how to train it yourself. That’s why we put together a few tips for you. At the same time, we are well aware that optimism is no magic bullet so at the end you will also find an extra tip on how to cope with life situations when it is really hard to think positively.

Tip #1
Tip #1: Focus on the good things

Life isn’t perfect. We don’t experience only good things throughout our days. When a nuisance or something bad happens, it always helps to actively try to find something positive about it. Stuck in a traffic jam? Why don’t you take it as an opportunity to call a friend with whom you long wanted to chat (providing you have hands-free, of course)? Your team has lost in the quarterfinals? Sad, but now you can think of the extra three hours that you can devote to playing football yourself rather than passively watching it.

Tip #2: Be grateful
Tip #2

Scientific research revealed that being thankful to others improves your self-esteem and reduces stress. Therefore, take time to think of people you would like to thank or moments you are grateful for. When we are grateful, we tend to find our lives meaningful and we enjoy them more. 

Tip #3
Tip #3: Be open to humour and positive people

Life isn’t perfect. We don’t experience only good things throughout our days. When a nuisance or something bad happens, it always helps to actively try to find something positive about it. Stuck in a traffic jam? Why don’t you take it as an opportunity to call a friend with whom you long wanted to chat (providing you have hands-free, of course)? Your team has lost in the quarterfinals? Sad, but now you can think of the extra three hours that you can devote to playing football yourself rather than passively watching it.

Tip #4: Talk to yourself in a positive way
Tip #4

Sometimes, we are ourselves the most harsh critics. But we can always overturn negative thinking into positive one. Instead of thinking “I am so bad at it.” you can always say to yourself “I just need more practice and then we will see.” There is no need to feel anxious in front of a new and unprecedented challenge because you can always perceive it as an opportunity to learn something new.

Tip #5
Tip #5: Don’t forget about your body

When something funny or joyful happens, it’s natural that we smile. But did you know it also works vice versa? Try it out. Just smile when not in the good mood and you’ll be surprised that you immediately start feeling better. Generally speaking, you should never underestimate the connection between body and mind. So, it is highly advisable to live a healthy lifestyle or at least do some sport from time to time – be it jogging, swimming, cycling or anything else that raises the level of endorphins.

Extra tip: Don’t be always positive

When we get angry about something unfair or malicious, we shouldn’t be putting aside negative emotions because they are often driving us to take action and make a change. Also, life is full of ups and downs and the downs can sometimes be really deep. There is no need to try to stay positive in times of grief or serious distress. Instead, expressing our real emotions helps others understand what we are going through and allows them to offer a helping hand. Don’t refuse it. And if you feel you can’t cope with the situation yourself, it’s perfectly normal to seek professional help. You could go to the psychologist or try out Mynd which has experienced coaches trained to deal with even the most serious situations.

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