A lot of words have been spoken and a lot of ink has been spilled about the power of positive thinking. Bestsellers have been sold worldwide to eager audiences wanting to know: what is the secret? What are the benefits? Can I really train myself to become a positive thinker, and if so, how does positive thinking help?
The answer is yes – you can become a positive thinker, and yes, it helps in every avenue of your life. Banishing negative thoughts and negative people from your life are key ingredients of becoming a positive thinker, and there are other strategies you can use that will allow you to reap the benefits of a new, optimistic attitude. It’s not always easy; it’s tempting to slide backward into cynicism and doubt, but following a few guidelines will make the process start to come easily. Once you’ve mastered these techniques, you’ll see and feel those benefits flowing into your life.
If you believe in yourself and your success, it will happen. That’s not a theory; it’s fact. Have you ever known a successful person who didn’t believe in themselves? No. To become rich, in every sense of the word – money, love, relationships – you have to believe you are deserving. That shift in focus and energy brings positive results, because others start to believe in you, too. Others want to be around happy, upbeat, positive people, in their business and personal relationships. When you’re one of those people, folks just naturally want to be around your energy and spirit. It’s like an invisible, magnetic pull. And in a work situation, for example, that means that if there are four candidates for a promotion, and you’re the most positive, chances are your boss will promote you.
Negative emotions and thoughts can have a paralyzing effect, meaning you get less done, at work and at home. They create a sense of being overwhelmed, and that can cause you to freeze. But tackling responsibilities with gusto and energy, grateful that you have a lot to do rather than sitting idle, means you’ll get more done. When you approach a task with enthusiasm and energy, you’ll get that task done – and others – in a shorter time frame. You can then take on more projects, earn more money…you see where this is headed, right? Doing more leads to more rewards, it’s that simple. And a longer life and better health are also rewards of positive thinking; study after study has verified this.
A guiding principle of this shift to positive thinking is, always tell the truth, to yourself and others. That may sound simple – you don’t make a habit of lying to friends and family, right? — but lying to ourselves is one of man’s most common shortcomings. It might mean taking full responsibility for an error at work; it might mean owning up to a mistake made with a friend. That’s the only way we learn from our mistakes and grow, by admitting fault, accepting blame and moving forward with resolve that the same error won’t happen again. It’s acceptable and in fact necessary to make new mistakes; that demonstrates that we’re changing. But repeating the same old mistakes and denying our role in them keeps us stuck, in patterns, in cycles and in situations that are unhealthy, physically and emotionally.
Positive thinking is not accomplished overnight; it takes work, particularly if you’re inclined toward negative thinking by nature. But the rewards of that work are long-lasting, multidimensional and life altering. Invest in yourself by committing to positive thinking for one day, as an experiment; you’ll instantly feel better when you view the “cup as half-full,” rather than half empty. And everyone around you will feel better, too.