Last week I wrote about the way to handle a quiet week where I suggested some techniques to help you deal with things when they are a little challenging. During this quieter time I had a chance to go through some of the many testimonials I have received from my talks and workshops and I found two from a recent talk which are perfect to follow up.
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Find the positive in the negative
If I hadn’t had this quiet week I wouldn’t have had the time to go through all the hundreds of testimonials I have received, which proves yet again that in every adversity there is a seed of equal or greater benefit. I have been racking my brain trying to find any contacts within two specific types of industries, and these two people who have seen me speak are the ones I have been searching for!
By keeping a positive mindset during the quiet week, I achieved a remarkable amount including identifying these two key people as well as potential online workshops and coaching I want to look into. Positive thinking has been ridiculed in many circles but it has real benefits in many ways.
What is positive thinking? Positive thinking is an umbrella term for a range of ideas and techniques associated with the psychology of achievement. It is the main idea that lies behind the self-help movement that originated in the United States and has since become very influential worldwide.
More and more people, including doctors and scientists, are turning to positive thinking because it is a powerful tool for transforming your inner self into a remarkable health-generating and self-healing entity. Optimistic people have discovered that the human mind has the power to turn wishes into reality through positive thinking and developing a positive mindset.
We can choose to be positive
All of our feelings, beliefs and knowledge are based on our internal thoughts, both conscious and subconscious, and we are in control of these processes. We can choose to be positive or negative, enthusiastic or dull, active or passive. These choices influence our feelings and behaviour, and they can also impact on our physical health.
Such choices are habits, developed over a lifetime and shaped by the feedback of parents, friends, teachers and colleagues, and also by our own self-talk. They are maintained by the inner conversations we have with ourselves, both consciously and subconsciously.
The first step in developing a positive mindset is to change our inner conversations. If we can learn to think more optimistically about events and situations, we are more likely to be happy and achieve success.
Positive thinking is an optimistic state of mind that always sees the bright side of life and focuses on the glass being half full instead of half empty. It is a mental attitude that produces constructive results – it brings inner satisfaction, peace and better health, improves relationships and attracts success into your life. Whilst we all have this powerful tool, many of us are not aware of it.
Researchers continue to find increasing evidence pointing to the many benefits of positive thinking. Top sports coaches believe that positive mental attitudes are every bit as important as physical fitness. An increasing number of health practitioners believe that physical ailments can be better addressed through positive thinking rather than conventional medicine.
Positive psychology also forms an important part of training programmes in commerce and industry. Some long-term studies on positive thinking and health suggest the evidence so far affirms that positive thinking leads to positive outcomes.
Happiness rather than success
One of the most prominent advocates of positive thinking is Professor Martin Seligman – an American psychologist famous for his work on learned optimism. His work emphasises happiness rather than success and he believes that optimism is one of the most important factors. What matters, he argues, is the way that people interpret what happens to them and how they think about a positive or negative event in their lives.
According to Seligman, when faced with an event where something negative happens, people can choose to place either a temporary or a permanent frame around it. People have an internal dialogue where they might say to themselves, ‘this is my fault. It’s going to get worse and there is nothing I can do about it. It will last forever.’
Others, however, might say, ‘what happened was out of my control. The situation is only temporary and I can change things for the better.’
A study released in May, 2014 by Bright Horizons, a provider of employer-sponsored child care, education, and work/life solutions, found that 89% of employees with high levels of well-being reported high job satisfaction and nearly two thirds of those employees reported consistently putting in extra effort at work thus indicating that happy employees are also more productive employees.
Have you ever noticed that the employees with the most positive attitudes in the workplace have the most friends? People want to be around them. Employees with positive attitudes tend to be more productive because they always see the accompanying opportunity with every challenge. They also know how to retrain their brains to spot patterns of possibility, so they can see, and seize, opportunities wherever they look.
I cover this in more detail in my book Off the Wall – How to Develop World Class Mental Resilience in chapter 7 on Positive Mindset
Thoughts for the week
1. You are in control – Your attitude is your choice. You have total control over your attitude you have the ability to re-frame how you are feeling and become positive.
2. You are accountable –You should be accountable for your work and for the things in your life.
3. Set realistic, achievable goals – The key is to build confidence by setting realistic goals
4. Be Optimistic – Believing in yourself, in your team, in your colleagues and in your family is important for success.
5. Be Solution Oriented – If you have a challenge at home or at work then that is a reality of life. Your attitude will determine how you approach this challenge.
6. Show Gratitude – Being gracious means seeing the good in people and situations and expressing your appreciation.
7. Surround yourself with positive people- Spend time with people who are positive, supportive, and who energize you.
Well that’s it for this week have a great weekend and stay positive.