We have all heard the saying “we are what we eat,” but did you know that we are also what we think? Our mind is immensely powerful. It can make us feel invincible, and sometimes it can also make us feel invisible. We have up to 60,000 thoughts a day and let me tell you, that if these thoughts are mostly negative, our mental, physical and emotional health can go down the drain.
Nonetheless, if we dare to change these negative thoughts into positive ones, we will witness an incredible transformation – in our lives, in ourselves.
Yes, I know, it is easier said than done. Life is full of unexpected situations that can take us off guard and put us in a negative state of mind very quickly. Problems that overwhelm us, the news with depressing stories that make us want to go under our beds and hide. All these different situations can make us feel angry, scared, stressed and anxious, and with all the negativity our wellbeing suffers. Our self-esteem and confidence decline letting limiting beliefs take over paralyzing us from moving forward.
However, we can’t just hide nor allow all these negative feelings cripple us. We need to fight back and retrain ourselves to have a positive mindset that will take control of our negative thoughts. If we believe that we can do it, that we can quiet the negativity, that not everything is dark but that we can bring our light to make things better, we will experience a big difference in our lives.
Having a positive mindset or attitude contributes to the release of serotonin in our brain, a substance that helps regulate our mood and social behavior, appetite, digestion, sleep, and even memory. It reinvigorates us, boosting our self-confidence, empowering us to overcome barriers and even explore new challenges. Plus we will set an example to those around us that will keep the positive momentum going.
So how can we overcome negative thoughts and embrace the power of positive thinking?
1. Stop the negative chatter in your head – Remember that little voice telling us “It’s too hard!” “I can’t do that!” “I am not good enough”? We have to make it stop. So the next time you hear that little voice, the second it begins with its message of doubt, anger or frustration, take a deep breath, stop what you are doing and close your eyes for a couple of minutes. Bring your focus to your breathing and your heartbeat. If the little voice, starts again, remove that thought and replace it with something else or nothing at all. Add some quiet music or touch soft fabrics. These actions will reactivate your senses and open the door to positive vibes.
2. Create a positive environment – Encourage positive conversations with others. Small talk also generates serotonin, which helps rebalance your mood. Keep track of the positive things that happen to you; write them down. Create your arsenal of positive things, memories, ideas that you can tap into whenever you are not feeling great. Maybe read a joke or think about something that made you laugh another day. Keep positive people closer. Be grateful even for the smallest things; complement or thank someone else on good things. Most importantly create new positive thoughts. Sometimes a small shift in how you word things can create a big impact. Write these thoughts down and say them out loud. Seeing and hearing things helps add a different perspective. When I’ve shared my problems with others, I suddenly realize that they are not as bad as I thought when I hear myself say them out loud.
3. Explore solutions and decide to take action – or not – Life has ups and downs, and we have to learn to accept and deal with them. Although things may seem painful, scary or chaotic, if we learn to deal and overcome negative situations, we will grow from them and become stronger. Always see these instances as opportunities to grow and become better. The more you do this, it will become easier to face difficult situations with calm and positivism until it becomes a habit.
Remember that our mind is very powerful, and we can retrain it to achieve great things. It may take practice, but once we decide that positive thinking is the path we want to follow, it will become our second nature. So, open the door to boundless possibilities and embrace a life of positive thinking.
"A POSITIVE MIND WILL GIVE YOU A POSITIVE LIFE"
Ilhiana Rojas is a certified Transformation Strategy Coach with a lifelong career of guiding people and teams to success.