By Josh Richardson
We live in denial of our inherent negativity for the most part, and often wonder why the world around is so mean and reckless. Unlike dogs we may not be born eternal optimists, but positivity is something that can be imbibed even if a tad forcibly; such as by trying to tweak our sense of humour, the way we react to a given situation, by being more pleasant and believing others too have a mind, and by smiling each time somebody says ‘thank you’. While positivity is a state of mind, the answer lies in our perspective. Here are 18 things you can do right now to becoming a more loving and positive person.
It’s one thing to wax eloquent on positivity, but quite another to be a positive person at heart. Despite believing to have a positive outlook, we invariably weigh the cons first. What’s more, we prefer needless sarcasm for humour, manage a wry smile when something is genuinely funny, and believe deep down that the glass is actually half empty.
18 Things To You Can Do To Change Your Outlook:
1. Have the desire: To become a positive person one must have a strong desire to be positive. And the desire will come only if you are convinced that becoming a positive person will enhance the quality of life. Positivity is like an aura, and you know you are a positive person when people start trusting you, random people become polite with you, colleagues at work respect your positive outlook and you start building rapport easily.
2. Believe in all possibilities: About what you can or cannot do. About what is possible or impossible. Don’t allow your limiting beliefs to keep you stuck in the wrong place. Spread your wings and fly! Once you realize all is possible, the doors of limitation that were closed in your mind will open be connected to all those aspects of consciousness.
3. Be realistic: Do not try to become a saint. Becoming a positive person does not mean you can never have any negative emotion or encounter any negative situation. It is the overall attitude that matters and your reaction to every experience. Don’t get bogged down by failure, and disappointed when your expectations are not met. Understand that everything is of service to you. All experiences are neutral and our perception is what creates our positive or negative outlook.
4. Experience empowerment rather than criticism: Give up your constant need to complain and criticize about those things — people, situations, events that make you unhappy, sad and depressed. Nobody can make you unhappy, no situation can make you sad or miserable unless you allow it to. When you criticize, you are passing self-judgement for something lacking in your life that you refuse to let go of. Never underestimate the power of positive thinking. For every opportunity you feel the inclination to criticize, try to think about how that specific situation is serving or benefiting others.
5. Experiment: Be a keen observer. Use everyday life incidents to see how you can manage them in a more positive manner. These will serve as perfect instances to turn your outlook more positive. For starters, contemplate how you could have better handled a situation by being less hostile and more indulgent. Come up with five ways that could have saved the day, and learn to take things at face value sometimes. Remember, your ability to trust the other person also reflects your genuineness.
6. Accept responsibility: Guilt is a trick of the mind. Accept responsibility for yourself, your life and your actions. You are response-able. You are an adult. You are account-able, meaning, with every action you take, you account for it. You chose to do it; you must accept the consequences of it and you did it all for a reason…to learn. If you continue to feel guilty, you stop learning.
7. Speech and body language: Try and make positive words a part of your daily lingo, and work on your body language in way that you come across as friendly and approachable. Look amused when something is amusing, laugh when something is funny, congratulate when credit is due, and give others a chance to narrate their side of the story. Never think you are the only interesting, knowing one around.
8. Be yourself: You are unique. Enjoy your uniqueness. Nobody in the world is just like you. Stop trying so hard to be something that you’re not just to make others like you. The moment you take off all your masks, the moment you accept and embrace the real you, you will find people will be drawn to you, effortlessly.
9. Company: One way to becoming positive is to seek positive company as both positivity and negativity are infectious. If the people you spend most of your time with are grumpy or have a pessimistic standpoint, you’ll find yourself inadvertently mirroring the same emotions with others. In order to inculcate positivity it is imperative that your friend circle is a positive, energetic, and a happy bunch. You’ll find yourself carrying the same positivity everywhere you go.
10. Think here and now: The past and future often set us on a path of emotional turmoil. We often assume the past looked so much better than the present and the future looks so frightening, but you have to take into consideration the fact that the present moment is all you have and all you will ever have. The past you are now longing for — the past that you are now dreaming about — was ignored by you when it was present. Stop deluding yourself. Be present in everything you do and enjoy life. After all life is a journey not a destination. Have a clear vision for the future, prepare yourself, but always be present in the now.
11. Activities: Do not remain idle and brood. Take up positive activities with others or in isolation. Share a joke, narrate a pleasant incident, take part in sporting activities, go for a run in the evening after work, have healthy sex, and you’ll find yourself bubbling with positive energy.
12. Take it easy: Everyday life is bound to give you shocks. Be prepared to minimise impact and shrug it off. For instance, you may get too hassled everyday while driving to work or trying to park your car. When you accept the fact that certain things cannot be changed, you’ll be more at ease with yourself and those around too.
13. Drop your expectations: Let go of any expectations of yourself that will limit your growth. If you hold high expectations for how others should behave, you will often be disappointed if they do not represent themselves in the manner you expected. It is only your expectations of people that cause you to judge them which ultimately is a judgement of yourself. Far too many people are living a life that is not theirs to live. They live their lives according to what others think is best for them, they live their lives according to what their parents think is best for them, to what their friends, their enemies and their teachers, their government and the media think is best for them. They ignore their inner voice, that inner calling. They often forget what makes them happy, what they want, what they need. You have one life — this one right now — you must live it, own it, and especially don’t let other people’s opinions distract you from your path.
14. Maintain a diary: Instead of recounting all events of the day, filter out only the positive ones and make a note of them. It could be anything trivial from your bus arriving on time, your mom cooking a delicious breakfast, to remembering to pay the bills on time. When we look for positivity in the little things that make our lives worthwhile, we leave no room for negativity. Try consciously practising this for 10 days, and at the end of day ten when you read your diary back you’ll only have memories of all the good things that happened to you.
15. Meditate: Not only does it secrete happy hormones but also creates a sense of awareness within you. You will learn to control your breathing, and by way of it, control your mind from wandering. Every time you meditate, you feel a surge of positive energy through your body that calms your nerves, soothes your mind, elevates your mood, and not to mention enhances your level of tolerance.
16. Embrace change: Change is good. Change will help you move from A to B. Change will help you make improvements in your life and also the lives of those around you. Follow your bliss, embrace change — don’t resist it.
17. Re-invent your need to be right: There are so many of us who can’t stand the idea of being wrong — wanting to always be right — even at the risk of ending great relationships or causing a great deal of stress and pain, for us and for others. We love to right-fight. It’s just not worth it because the state of being right is all subjective with so many layers and perspectives of truth. Whenever you feel the ‘urgent’ need to jump into a fight over who is right and who is wrong, ask yourself this question: “Would I rather be right, or would I rather be kind?” ~ Wayne Dyer.
18. Say ‘thank you’: Thank god, thank your parents, friends, and thank yourself for all the hard work you did, for everything you achieved. Saying thank you frequently makes you humble, and a humble person is seldom cynical.
Josh Richardson is blogger, healer, and a constant pursuer of the natural state of human consciousness.