How do you take control of your life, in the midst of so much stress and negativity? Here are 10 keys to positive thinking that will allow you to take control of your life despite what else is going on around you.
Take control of your life. These days it seems everyone is telling everybody else to take control of their lives and that positive thinking will make them happier and more productive. An excellent idea, but how exactly do you take control of your life? What are the keys to positive thinking?
There is no easy answer, but at first glance, it would seem that indeed positive thinking might be the way towards achieving that goal. Even though it sounds simplistic, many of us develop negative thinking patterns because we become frustrated by our challenges. Regardless of whether you are an entrepreneur or someone with a job or whether you are a stay at home mom or dad, in today’s fast paced lifestyle it is quite normal to feel overwhelmed. This often leads to negative thinking patterns. This negative outlook makes it even harder for us to manage those challenges and move forward.
When you practice positive thinking you focus on your strengths and accomplishments, which in turn increase happiness and motivation. That positive feeling allows you to spend more time making progress and less time feeling down and stuck. The following tips provide practical suggestions that you can use to help you shift into more positive thinking patterns and feel less overwhelmed and more in control of your life:
1. Take Excellent Care of Yourself
It's much easier to be positive when you are physically feeling well. So eating right, exercising and getting enough rest are key to your ability to be in a positive frame of mind.
2. Make a List of Things You Are Grateful For
When you remind yourself of all the things that are right in your life, you will be pleasantly surprised to see how stresses and challenges don't seem quite as bad anymore. Just one measly minute a day to stop and appreciate the good things will make a huge difference.
3. Combat Rumination by using Pattern Interrupts (Stop Worrying!)
If you find yourself ruminating, in other words going over the same thought over and over again, a great way to stop it is to interrupt the pattern and force yourself to do something completely different. Of course if your ponderings are of a positive thought then by all means continue. The problem is we human beings tend to focus on the negative; hence our rumination often becomes hyper-focused on something negative. This is what worrying is. It's never productive, because there is no logic or rationale behind it nor is it solution-oriented. Unnecessary and unwarranted worrying does not accomplish anything. Try some of these methods. Change your physical environment - go for a walk or sit outside. Do something you like to do as in a hobby. Call a friend, read a book, listen to some music, watch a movie – the idea is get your mind off of that gnawing, negative thought.
4. Hugs and Touch (with discretion of course!)
There has been enough research to show that proper or positive physical contact with friends, loved ones, pets or friendly animals which are non-pets, is an instant pick-me-up. There was a study done where a waitress was asked to lightly touch some of her customers on the arm as she handed them their checks. She received higher tips from these customers than from the ones she didn't touch!
5. Cut Off Negative Thoughts
Your thoughts are yours alone. It only has that much power as you give it. So if it is a negative thought, render it powerless by detaching yourself from it. If it is a positive thought, fuel it; give it authority and make it real. It’s your choice!
In Part 2 of 10 Ways to Take Control of Your Life: Keys to Positive Thinking, I’ll post the rest of the techniques. In the mean time please share in the comments section your methods and your keys to positive thinking and what you do to take control of your life.
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