I was reminiscing with an old friend last night about the 1980’s band ‘Happy Mondays’, who were from my hometown of Manchester and influenced the likes of Oasis and Stone Roses. This strangely perhaps led me to think how you can feel more positive today and why is that important?
Well, firstly it is important because it’s physically and psychologically healthier to be optimistic rather than pessimistic as evidenced by many research studies. Probably the most famous positivity practitioner is Professor Martin Seligman who with a team of researchers from Dartmouth and the University of Michigan found that the overall health of pessimists deteriorated far more rapidly as they age. Compared to optimists.
Similarly, research by the Mayo Clinic revealed that optimists have lower levels of cardiovascular disease and longer life-spans whilst researchers at Yale and the University of Colorado found that pessimism is associated with a weakened immune response to tumours and infection.
Also having a positive mindset is much more likely to result in more positive and engaging behaviours which can generate better outcomes and better personal connections with your work colleagues, family and friends. Obviously, one pessimistic day won’t matter, but it will if it becomes a habit.
With regards to today if you have woken up in a negative mood and a few things have gone against you here are 7 suggestions to become more positive and turn things around.
- Get your inner voice talking positively to override your negativity “You can do this. You are good enough“.
- Watch a short youtube video of your favourite comedian or tv show to make you smile.
- VisualiSe good things that will happen later in the day and write them down to confirm them. By visualising what you think will happen will reduce the uncertainty of the day ahead and as a result, you will feel more positive.
- Do something good for someone else. Also called paying it forward or a random act of kindness, tipping a busker or buying a copy of the ‘Big Issue’ from a street seller can make you feel more positive.
- Go for a walk or a workout – exercise will blow your blues away.
- Get some perspective and talk yourself out of thinking the day is bad – how bad is it really, in the grand scheme of things? Assuming it’s not, shake yourself out of this ‘state’ and become more positive.
- Search for the silver lining or opportunity in the situation that is making you feel negative which in turn will make you feel more positive.
Following on with the Happy Mondays theme, do some or all of these things when you are feeling negative, and “Bobs yer Uncle”- you should feel more positive.