It usually takes a journey for positive thinking to consistently become a part of your life.
My Positive Thinking Journey
For many years, I pretended to be happy. I read all the books, consulted with many professionals and had the blueprint for a positive, happy persona. On the outside, I appeared to be happy and confident, and on many occasions I was. Yet these feelings were fleeting. They were based on how I was feeling with others or in what I doing at the moment. However, the conversation I was having with myself was not constructive. It did not build my self-esteem.
Positive thinking was not my focus. I was always thinking about what I had not accomplished, things that were not going well, people who had hurt me, and things I could not control. I became exhausted. My body literally was telling me this path was no longer serving me. I was harboring negative feelings, getting sick often, and feeling sorry for myself. I let self-care go by the wayside.
It didn’t just hurt me, but those around me. My relationships began to suffer; people could feel my funky energy brought forth by my negative thinking. Unfortunately, some of these relationships were severed beyond repair. I had a choice to make. I could delve into this positive thinking concept I had been preaching about to clients or continue this toxic cycle, threaten my mental and physical health, and miss out on the beauty of the world around me. So, I embarked on my positive thinking path.
This was not an Aha, Oprah, moment, rather a culmination of events and experiences that pushed me to actually start practicing positive thinking. I had the tools and the teachers. I just needed the will to really start living in a positive mindset. I believe all of us want to be happy. Sometimes, we just don’t have the energy. We are too tired. I had to actively choose a new route, shifting negative thoughts into more positive ones. This was not an overnight success (I still have to practice every day) but when I started working the positivity path, it became totally worth it. My energy was attracting more positive experiences and overall happiness.
Working the Positive Path
I want to share my path to positive thinking. Maybe the steps I took can help you reach your goal of bringing more positivity into your life.
- I surrounded myself with like-minded positive people and had to actively shift some of my relationships. I brought those with positive energy closer and devoted less time to those who were bringing me down.
- Instead of looking at tasks as a burden, I started to make things fun. The have-to’s can be exciting. Instead of dreading the gym, I rented a bike and explored New York City. Rather than avoiding chores, I make them a game and wound up smiling the whole time.
- I became grateful. Instead of looking at the past with regret, I have tried to reprogram my thoughts. I am now grateful for many of the experiences because they have taught me so much. I remind myself about what I learned from the friendship/relationship that ended. I look for the things that I am thankful for and appreciative of and remind myself of these things when I am feeling a wave of negativity. It shifts my mindset.
- I found purpose. I began finding and attracting others who shared my mindset, not in a therapeutic sense, but who desired to make the world a more positive place. I have friends who are not in the helping profession, yet make it their intention everyday to do something that can change the world in some way, and maintain positive thinking. A friend of mine is an illustrator. She helps authors make their stories come to life. Another is a consultant. He helps small businesses become profitable. Their intentions are to find positivity in their work. This energy is exuded to those around them.
Some tools may work for you, others may not, but be gentle with yourself. Try shifting your negative mindset subtly. Remember, the goal is to find your path to positive thinking that lasts a lifetime.
Take Good Care,
Emily is the author of Express Yourself: A Teen Girls Guide to Speaking Up and Being Who You Are.You can visit Emily’s Guidance Girl website. You can also find her on Facebook, Google+ and Twitter.