Being positive, having that positive mental attitude or PMA sits at the heart of your perspective of life, the world around, your relationships and how you feel about yourself.
In a sense it is at the heart of most psychology practices and an essential for good emotional health.
Great, I hear you say, so how do I go about this? What if thing don’t go right and I don’t feel at all positive.
How do I master this PMA that is so important.
Well, positivity is far more than smiling and looking happy, it is about approaching life from a positive point of view, and focussing on the good and better things in live rather than negative events.
You wil have heard the term positive mindset and understand that how our mind and brain think impacts on our thoughts and feelings.
So how should we define PMA or positive mindset.
I like this simple definition by R Sasson which reads :
Positive thinking is a mental and emotional attitude that focuses on the bright side of life and expects positive results.
Of course, thinking positively does not mean ignoring or avoiding every bad or negative thing that happens.
It does mean that when those life challenges happen, as they surely will, we tackle them with a positive outlook.
It means we look for the best in other people, for the best possible outcomes to bad events and experiences and importantly, we see ourselves and our abilities and values with a positive mindset.
To master this, and responsibly adopt that positive mindset we need to adopt positive thinking as our default thought pattern.
In turn that will help us make the best of every situation we face, or on advertising speak « not make a drama out of a crisis ».
A positive mindset goes deep, but we can start to adopt habits which will help our mind learn to acquire a more positive mental attitude.
It means when you find yourself in a situation you will be able to make the best of it, and not give in to helplessness or negativity.
Now positivity does not sit alone, it is linked to characteristics which make up your overall attitude.
You will find a range of resources, articles, short guides and courses which deal with many of these and can support you toward an overall positive outlook.
Areas such as integrity, gratitude, resilience, acceptance (and self acceptance), self-esteem, mindfulness and optimism are all traits which support a positive mindset and you will find these are discussed or resources are available on this website.
For this short article we are going to look at some examples of positive outlook which may resonate with many of you and then of some of the tips and tricks to help you develop a more positive attitude.
Keep in mind also that a positive mental attitude can help you cope with stress, give you greater personal resources, help you develop your coping skills in whatever situations you need to face, and increases the control you have over whatever comes your way.
It is empowering, and positive thoughts are an investment in yourself.
Here are some examples, all drawn from the characteristics above, which demonstrate positive thinking in day to day life.
- Being friendly to people you don’t know
- Making someone’s day perhaps with a compliment or by giving praise for something
- Not allowing negative or miserable people drag you into their ‘black hole’
- Giving without expecting anything in return
- Being genuinely happy for someone else’s good news
- Even in things are bad at the moment, holding on to a positive future goal or vision
There are of course, many more and you can probably add to this list as an exercise in positivity.
To complete this short piece, I am finishing with some practical tips to help you develop your own positive thinking.
If you would like to explore the topic further, or to take a short course in Positivity, then I will be posting a short guide very soon.
In the meantime, if you need any help drop me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Do not anticipate trouble, or worry about what may never happen. Keep in the sunshine. Benjamin Franklin
Here are some tips to help set you on your way:
- Find good things to focus on even if they are very small
- Use inspirational quotes to motivate and encourage you
- Start each day with positive affirmations
- Avoid letting yourself getting dragged down into other people’s complaints
- Make at least two people smile every day
- Keep a Gratitude journal (see resources)
- Focus on the present; don’t dwell on the past, it is done
- Learn from failure and see it as a lesson not a disaster
- Assume that the people around you have the best intentions
- Show the world how resilient you are by staying positive when something does go wrong
- Banish negative self-talk
- Find the funny side of bad situations whenever you can
- Surround yourself with positive people as friends or colleagues
- Acknowledge and celebrate your successes
Remember to check out resources and tips elsewhere and register for updates and information to support you here.
Happy positive and empowered living.
Optimism refuses to believe that the road ends without options.
R H Schuller