Changing the view of our lives stems from learning new ways of thinking about the life that we’ve created thus far and what we will create in the future. It’s really about learning how to get “unstuck”. Many of us want other experiences in our lives, but the not so great choices that we’ve made tend to have tremendous power over us. Instead of re-framing our thinking about our poor choices and using those experiences as lessons, the effects of making out of alignment choices stops us from moving in the direction of our dreams.
That was true for me. I spent many years self-punishing. Wondering why I allowed myself to be physically and emotionally abused for over six years of my life. Being unforgiving of myself for making poor financial decisions, for not feeling worthy of my desires and for not even knowing that I could do better.
As I slowly began to see that I could do better in my life, I realized that just because I had not shown up in life as I truly wanted, it did not mean that from this point forward I could do better. The turning point came when I began to study positive psychology. I learned that I could re-create my life from a place of power and authenticity by discovering empowering mindsets. This work literally challenged almost every single one of my thought patterns. I began to look at life with a fresh set of eyes.
Positive Psychology is the scientific study of human flourishing and an applied approach to optimal functioning. It has also been defined as the study of the strengths and virtues that enable individuals, communities and organizations to thrive (Gable & Haidt, 2005, Sheldon & King, 2001). One of my mentors says that one of the themes of positive psychology is to uncover what is right with us. This means not only encouraging coping skills, but developing positive emotions and behaviors that can improve overall happiness. I look at Positive Psychology as a tool for recovering from negative thinking.
Here are three ways that Positive Psychology practices can help you do better in life:
1. Positivity Guides The Release Of Negative Self Talk
For the most part, negative self-talk is an acquired habit. It also feels like it’s easier to think negatively than it is to find a positive frame for the challenges. The mistake that many make is that while they say they want to release negativity, they focus on releasing the negativity. When in reality, it is the articulation and the acting from a positive mindset that replaces the negativity in our heads. Does that make sense? This is the power of focus energy. Over time, your mind reprograms itself by replacing the negative thoughts with higher vibration thinking.
2. Positivity Helps Bounce Back From Adversity
Resilience is the ability to recover from stress and circumstances which we perceive to be unfavorable. Being resilient means that we know how not to get stuck in challenging situations. Instead we apply tools that help us rise above the challenge. We look for best case scenarios, better feeling thoughts and more positive ways of coping with pain and challenges. Resilience is when we are no longer taken out by life’s challenges and adopt the belief that we have the skill set to get through adversity.
3. Positivity Nurtures Physical Well being
Research indicates that positive emotions are linked with better health, extended life, and overall greater well being. Positive emotions are also known to counteract stress, which many health professional call a silent killer. Negative emotions create a negative response in the body. Positive Psychology teaches us how to engage good emotions and thoughts, which in turn boost physical well being.
Positive Psychology practices assist with learning new ways of seeing our lives, both past, and present. With these tools, we are able to release self-imposed limitations that hold us back from living in alignment with our most empowered self.
Are you mentally flourishing or are you stuck in less than empowering thoughts patterns? Change becomes possible when we become aware of our blind spots.