A lot of my friends will tell you that I’ve changed a lot over the years. One of the biggest changes is that I made a conscious decision to make myself happy. It’s a decision that took a lot of work though. I spent a lot of time thinking about what happiness is and means to me and how to achieve that feeling. The number one thing I learned is that I need to be positive and stay positive. I think it’s easy to underestimate the role of your state of mind in our everyday life since we usually don’t put conscious thought into it.
To me, it’s important to be positive because of the binary system of positivity vs. negativity. By being negative, you’re not really doing anything to help yourself get out of the situation you’re in or change the circumstances. You’re literally stopping in your tracks saying “I am defeated, this is the end, there’s nothing I can do”. However, being positive in my opinion is acknowledging that there is a chance of a happy outcome or that things may not be as horrible as you see them right this second.
I’ve been asked a lot over the past year how I am able to be so positive all the time. (That was actually a weird sentence to type out. Not boasting, but it’s really is a question I’ve been getting a lot lately!) So here is my unofficial guide to those glorious positive vibes.
#1) Being positive is a choice. We could debate this, but I firmly believe that you need to choose to be positive. It’s the first step to acknowledging that you can do it, that there is a way out, that it’s not a hopeless cause. By choosing to stay positive, you’re giving yourself a stepping stone towards an outcome in your favour.
#2) Being positive takes work. We all want good things to fall into our lap out of the sky. But the reality is, 99.99% of things take work. Positivity is no different. Staying positive goes against our primal human instincts of worrying about what’s next, jumping to conclusions and seeing the big picture (IMHO). That’s why positivity needs to be a conscious effort. You constantly have to remind and motivate yourself to stay positive.
#3) It’s okay to be sad and have negative emotions. It’s unrealistic to say we can all be happy and positive 100% of the time. Situations come up, life happens, and shit hits the fan. I think it’s important to acknowledge your feelings of sadness/anger/depression. At the same time, I think it’s unproductive to dwell on them too long… you need to acknowledge and move on. And that takes you back to step #1!
All in all, this is just my viewpoint. I’m in no way saying I’m perfect or discreding mental health issues. This is just a system that has worked for me.