It can be hard staying positive with all the negativity that surrounds us. I can’t scroll through my Facebook newsfeed without seeing people bash each other for differing political beliefs. I can’t drive to work without someone cutting me off in traffic. And I can’t even watch late night TV without PETA showing me abused, caged animals and making me bawl. The world is awful.
Well aren’t I just a freakin’ ray of sunshine?
I lied. The world is NOT awful. Awful things happen in the world, but what you make of the world is your choice. You just have to remind yourself that your own positivity is controlled by you.
I want to make clear that I’m speaking about positivity, not happiness. Positivity and happiness can affect each other, but they are two distinctly different things. Happiness can’t always be controlled. Your attitude and perceptions, however are 100% controlled by you. You can, in fact, train yourself to be a more positive person which will allow you to create more happiness in your life.
Listen, I’m not claiming to be the all-knowing optimist that prances through life farting glitter and spewing rainbows and sunshine. Keeping a positive mindset isn’t always easy and I definitely have my moments of struggle. I do however, believe that positivity is one of my greatest strengths and I’m hoping that sharing my personal experiences and learnings can inspire you to focus on your own positivity too. I’ve learned over the years that adhering to these practices have not only made me happier, but have made me a better person. I’ve also found that training myself to think positively when things are going well in my life has allowed me to stay afloat during periods of hardship.
Today I’m sharing with you the top three practices I use to bring more conscious positivity into my life. I hope that I can empower you to do the same!
See the best in yourself
Nobody is perfect. (Except maybe Ryan Reynolds ← and yes, I did just google “Ryan Reynolds shirtless” to find that. You’re welcome.) We all have our own faults and struggles. Recognizing and acknowledging our downfalls are critical to a good sense of self-awareness, but fixating on them is unhealthy. Fix what you can. Accept what is uncontrollable.
Then, give yourself constant reminders of personal qualities you love. Write them down if you have to! Use your strengths to knock down life goals. Learn to love “me time.” Work on achieving body peace.
The first step to embracing positivity starts with focusing on you! It’s tough to see the best in the world if you don’t even see the best in yourself. Self love and self care are key to achieving overall positivity in your life.
Keep Complaining to a Minimum
We all have times where we just need to vent. Get it all out. That’s healthy! But there’s a difference between venting and just straight up complaining. This is something that I, admittedly, need to work on.
I think we often complain just to fill the silence in between conversation. “I’m so tired.” or “I’m so over today,” or “This weather sucks.” And we expect others to reply with “I know, right?” These are the tiniest complaints – totally benign comments with no malicious intent. But they are negative nonetheless. When you are constantly vocalizing these insignificant negative things and hearing them from others around you, they really start adding up. The more you complain, the more you are convincing yourself that your complaint is a bigger and bigger issue. As a result, you are creating your own bad day.
Instead of bringing up minor annoyances from my day, I’ve made an effort to spend my energy talking about things that are going well or things that interest me. This has allowed me to have more meaningful, interesting conversations with others and let go of the things that bother me at the same time.
Respond to Others’ Negativity Effectively
Negative people aren’t bad people. We’ve all been our very own version of Debbie Downer at some point or another. But being around negativity can drain you of your own positivity. Learning how to effectively respond to negativity, rather than perpetuating it is crucial to maintaining your own optimism.
I find that we often automatically respond to other’s pessimism with our personal anecdotes of negativity to be relatable. (It’s the “I know, right?” mentality that I alluded to above.) Fight this urge! Don’t let yourself get pulled into the vortex of pessimism! Instead, turn around a negative conversation by responding with something uplifting or humorous. This will allow you to uplift others and help them to reframe their mindset, while also reminding yourself to think positively.
We all have different ways of maintaining positivity, so I would love to hear from you all too! Tell me about how you keep a positive mindset in the comments below!
dress: Forever 21
shoes: DV by Dolce Vita – old (similar, similar, similar)
bag: Michael Kors
choker: Sugarfix by Baublebar
earrings: Charming Charlie (similar)
lips: Lorac – in merlot