Health Check Tuesday: Postive Thinking

positive-thinking2

“Fear less, hope more; Eat less, chew more; Whine less, breathe more; Talk less, say more; Love more, and all good things will be yours.” ~Swedish Proverb~

I like the above quote, we should all strive to do each of the following in our daily lives. True it’s not easy to maintain such a positive outlook on life, let’s face it when you’re feeling down you’re just not going to always be perky, happy, and full of positive goodness.

YAY!!! I'm just so happy!!!

When my son was a toddler I used to play this game with him. Every day had a theme: Moody Monday, Terrific Tuesday, Wacky Wednesday, Thankful Thursday, Freaky Friday, Sassy Saturday and Super Sunday. It was a great way to teach him the different ways to look at each day. On Tuesdays I would ask him what we could do to make that day terrific. Sometimes it was something as simple as having a picnic outside with me and playing in the dirt. For a three year old that is pretty terrific! It was a fun way to keep positive as a single Mom and to enjoy life with my little one.

After looking around for some positive inspiration I kept finding various steps to positive thinking. Hopefully you’ll find a few to try out 🙂 Get ready…

  1. Identify negative thoughts–basically filtering out the thoughts where you keep beating yourself up over something that you can no longer change. In other words: stop beating the dead horse. Move on. It’s in the past.
  2. Start your day positively–even if you wake up on the wrong side of the bed, you drop your cellphone in the toilet, your blow dryer stops working, your coffee maker dies, you cross a black cat and accidentally knock over some mirrors which then shatter into a million pieces, you get stuck in traffic on your way to work, your boss bumps the meeting up two days ahead of schedule, to which you are late for, and the presentation that would have been ready in a couple of days is still incomplete, you get the wrong order at lunch, the restroom stall you chose is out of tp and seat covers, someone took the last bit of office coffee and didn’t make another pot, you get home in time to watch your favorite show only to find out some police chase is hogging up every channel…it’s been a no good, very bad day…but on the flip side you were given another day to wake up to, you have air in your lungs, those mirrors you broke saved the store from putting up merchandise that wasn’t going to be popular anyway, the pot of coffee you made perked up someone else in the office, while someone else got to enjoy your lunch you were able to try something new for a change, and hey it’s always good to see the cops getting the bad guy in the end!
  3. Live a healthy lifestyle–Sure, easier said than done but it is possible to make one healthy choice each day. Even just one could set you on the path to making another one and another one. Instead of having a doughnut for a mid morning snack have an apple instead. Instead of that sixth cup of coffee drink 24 ounces of water, instead of letting your head droop at your desk at 2:30pm get up and move around to get your blood flowing. Skip to the bus stop instead of walking, put the cellphone/ipod/ipad/blackberry/android down and take a few moments to just appreciate your surroundings. Close your eyes and take several cleansing breaths while counting your blessings!
  4. Keep positive quotes/sayings nearby–posters, handwritten notes from positive people and remember that you are your own worst critic. Change what you think about yourself and you’ll be amazed at how different you’ll be 🙂
  5. Assess what could be different–not what would have been different but what can you change now that will have a lasting effect on the future? Dwelling on the past isn’t healthy or positive, but changing one unhealthy habit for a good habit can set in things in motion for a happier you!
  6. Seek humor–who doesn’t love to laugh? I’m easily entertained and even found humor in the darkest moments of my life. It might have been cynical humor but just the act of laughing helps to reduce the production of certain hormones associated with stress which disrupt the balance of the immune system. Without getting too technical or scientific: laughing is a mood lifter, whenever I’m feeling blue I go to youtube and look up videos of laughing babies, cute puppies, or watch an episode of America’s Funniest Videos.
  7. Do something you love–so long as it doesn’t involve injuring others. If you love being outside then take some time away from the hustle and bustle of life, go on a hike, a stroll, ride your bike. If you prefer the indoors (like me) curl up with a good book, paint, do some crafts, bake some cookies and share them with a neighbor, entertain some friends with an appetizer night.
  8. See a situation in a different way–this correlates back with number two…sure you’re bound to have a rotten day but it’s all in how you look at it. Turn that frown upside down and look for the silver lining in each day!
  9. Give up perfection–seriously no one is capable of being perfect. We can all put up a good front but eventually the truth comes out and that can be more damaging than admitting that you’re not a perfect person. Just accept that you’re as flawed as the rest of us. It’s ok 🙂 Life isn’t a competition to see who can out do the other, it’s about living, loving, and helping others. Flaws and all you are who you are, don’t be ashamed to accept it and let others see it. It isn’t a sign of weakness, it’s a sign of being real.
  10. Focus on what you have not what you don’t have–you know the saying “the grass is greener on the other side” and that’s true when you’re looking into your neighbors yard but if you were to live in that yard for even a day you might find out just how bad things actually are. It’s easy to cover up the problems with enough Miracle Grow but when you start looking at the roots you might find some ugly things about your neighbors that will change your mind about wishing you had their life. Be thankful for what you have, the family you were blessed with, the home you live in, the job you have, the less than stellar car that gets you from point A to point B, and while you have your debt be glad it isn’t more than what it is.
  11. Help others–it’s amazing how just doing something for someone else will make you feel happier. Especially when it’s done selflessly, without expecting anything back in return. Look into volunteering in your local area, make time for others and get to know the needs within your community.
  12. Share happiness with others–I know you, it’s not easy to be happy when you’re not feeling like it but you never know who may be having a worse day than you. Don’t wallow in your own grief, push aside your own problems and try to brighten someone elses day. I once worked with a lady who would once a week bring in some homebaked goodies for all her coworkers. It was a nice gesture, something that everyone looked forward to and enjoyed! Be that kind of person, do something that will bring a smile to someone elses face, if you’re getting a coke for yourself grab something for someone else and set it on their desk. Pick up an extra news paper if you know someone will appreciate reading it. This can also translate to younger adults who might not call home as often, trust me your parents will enjoy hearing from you and knowing you’re ok, it will definitely bring a smile to their face!
  13. Last, but not least, treat yourself–as a Mom I can’t stress this enough! It’s not selfish to indulge in some “me” time, or to splurge on some expensive chocolate (if you like), hitting up some local thrift shops for some new clothes, or going to your favorite craft store to peruse the aisles without little ones screaming from the cart and reminding you that they’re hungry for the fifteenth time. It’s just nice to be childless every now and then, to go somewhere without the little ones. It can help you to reconnect with your spouse and to feel human once again (especially if you feel like all you do is chauffeur kids around from one activity to another with Cheerios stuck in your hair).  Treat yourself when you’ve reached a new goal, whether it be getting a bill paid off, reaching your next weight loss goal, finishing a house project or when you’re feeling down and need a pick me up.

Hope you all have a blessed day!!

 

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