Life does not make it easy to be a positive person, living is full of raw heartfelt feeling- from the most elated and exciting experiences to the deepest and darkest pain. I use to hold pain as if it was a weight hidden behind my rib cage, always aching and slowly suffocating. I have found a freedom beyond that hurt and it is the very thing I wish to focus on, for we all go through many difficulties in life and deserve to finally grab hold of the fresh air and beautiful light still existent in our lives!
As a busy mom, wife and growing as a step-mother, daily living can become very stressful. School days end with frustrated kids and a toddler finding their way to the terrible two’s is exhausting! Throw in several bad work days for daddy on top of it and the environment feels more tense than we all would like it to be. Being positive is not the first thing to focus on nor is it the easiest to accomplish. With many years of knowing what it feels like to allow things to weigh you down almost to nothing and wanting better than that for my own child and step-kids, I have personally learned to grab hold of mindfulness in times of distress. So much of what builds strength, character and coping skills comes from inside each of us, it has now become the most important thing to work on modeling coping skills and healthy thinking habits for my family!
Some may assume that being positive alludes you from feeling all other emotions that help you to appreciate happiness. But, being realistically positive does not mean you do not or cannot feel sadness, anger, grief or frustration. We all are human and we all will feel the effect of pain no matter how hard we try not to. Taking a step back, meditating or re-evaluating, and focusing on the good can create a positive attitude towards a negative circumstance! Here are five resources to share and what I personally do to build positive thinking within my family:
Looking at something in a more grateful way (appreciating the good and the opportunities that are realistically there) opens the door into taking a look at the bigger picture instead of the one negative thing we are focused on.
I am always trying to remind myself and the family of the things we still have in our lives that are good and meaningful, shifting a disappointment towards being grateful.
- Here is some new research on What We Know About Gratitude and Giving Back on the benefits of gratefulness.
“people who feel gratitude are less likely to be depressed and worried, and more likely to feel satisfied with their lives.”
2. Thinking and Thoughts
The greatest thing I have observed, in all the psychology and professional research into my writing, is how our personal thinking projects itself into our own reality. We can make ourselves believe the worst or prove to our self the ability to see past a negative experience. It truly makes a difference for me to redirect personal thoughts and focus on bettering my mood for the family. I try my very best to give an alternate perspective when someone in the family is stuck on very negative feelings and thoughts, in time hoping to motivate everyone’s ability to focus more positively and clearly while making their environment feel less tense and stressful by doing so.
- Repeatedly thinking about work-family conflict linked to health problems via Science Daily proves how our thinking can cause negative affects and advises how we can exercise our thoughts into healthy mindfulness.
3. Refraining from Negative Remarks
Lasting change comes from what we choose to think, say and do from day to day. We can use these abilities to break each other down or build each other up. Nothing unnerves me more than to hear anyone in the family speak negatively about someone else (friend or family) or use unkind language causally without thinking. We all bear enough unkindness out in the world and carry our own flaws and mistakes, so I am continually encouraging more kindness towards one another in the home and towards others.
- This is an insightful Psychology Today article How Negativity Can Poison Your Relationships.
“not to shine such a spotlight on a difficult situation that everything good fades out.”
4. Spiritual or Mindful Routine
This is what pulls everything together to build a more positive mindset. We are a christian family, incorporating bible reading and meditating into our daily lives truly brings better thoughts, words and actions into the home. Having my own personal study time also refreshes my mindset and encourages more effort on my part to be the best example I can be for my family. For those less into the spiritual aspect, mindfulness can be a great alternative to incorporate more balance in daily life.
- Check out this article in adding a mindful coffee break to your day!
5. Learn Not to Take Things So Serious
I am a sucker for taking things seriously at times and getting overly anxious in some situations. But one thing I have managed to recognize is to take it easy from day to day knowing each day has its own anxiety. When the toddler won’t nap or the house is still a mess because of it, I have to take it as it is and not fret. I encourage the same for everyone else in the family. Seeing how stressed they are at times, helps me to keep working on my stress levels in order for everyone to not take things so seriously sometimes.
- Feeling a bit stressed over little things? This is a great article on 4 Ways to Go With the Flow.
Those are just a few of the weekly and daily habits I am working on and trying to encourage. Taking a bad stressful day and learning to turn it around I feel is such a great asset for anyone looking to improve themselves and their family. It isn’t easy, far from simple and can feel overwhelming to turn a negative mindset around, the key has been perseverance! Build up those around you by picking out the advantage to a disadvantage, speak up-building things to feel less hurt by that rude person, notice your strengths in a difficult situation, shrug off the insignificant little things to feel less worried, be grateful for what you still have in your life despite a loss. All those thought adjustments can make a huge difference in daily life! If I can experience a difference in myself and my environment from how I choose to think and look at things, I will always continue sharing that knowledge. I hope everyone finds the little pieces of happiness and life’s goodness in their own life! What adjustments can you make to better your personal life? As a fellow blogger simply stated:
“you have to take control and make life into what you want it to be.”
Here is an encouraging video by Dr. Becker-Phelps Ph.D/therapist on how we can benefit from thought adjustments in our life and towards our self. From the Psychology Today article The Good Life: Pause, Observe and Absorb Positives .
*Cover Photo: Via leeaspland.com