Positive thoughts can lead to positive outcomes
Published by: LifeWorks,
Those living in snowy climates are probably familiar with the feeling of standing outside on an early spring day, complaining about how cold it is and how dreary everything looks. It seems like winter will never end.
In those moments, negative thoughts can quickly take over, and it can be challenging to find anything positive to think about. But then something unexpected happens to make you pause. The birds are singing louder than you’ve heard in several months, or the children in your neighborhood are playing outside for the first time in months. Suddenly, your mood changes and your positivity returns.
Positive psychology, or the study of happiness is, “a field that examines how ordinary people can become happier and more fulfilled,” according to Psychology Today. The change in mindset from negative to positive is a great example of a main principle of positive psychology: for every negative thought, think of two to three positives. By using this technique, psychologists believe you can banish the negativity that takes up unnecessary space in your mind for a few minutes and improve your mood.
It is not always straightforward finding the positive but, with practice, it can become easier than you think. Start by identifying your negative thinking patterns and then head them off at the pass. Often, when one negative thought occurs, it is easy for that thought to multiply. Turning to positive thinking doesn’t mean ignoring the unpleasant things happening around you; it just means that you are approaching those situations in a more productive way.
Not only can positive thinking improve mental health and improve your outlook on life, it can also greatly benefit your physical and emotional well-being. According to researchers at the Mayo Clinic, positive thinking can help manage stress, which has added health benefits including:
- a strengthened immune system
- an increased lifespan
- lower rates of depression
- decreased risk of death from cardiovascular disease
The next time you find yourself thinking negatively, try to reframe the situation and find two to three positive things to fight that downward spiral. Try focusing on something totally different such as the beauty of your surroundings or memories with a loved one. Give yourself permission to laugh off the “small stuff”, surround yourself with positive people, and practice positive self-talk daily. Positive thoughts result in positive outcomes.
LifeWorks users can find more about positive thinking by using their username and password to log onto the mobile app or login.lifeworks.com. Search for “optimism” for articles, podcasts, and more.
Kristin Przymus received her Bachelor of Science in Exercise Science: Health Promotion from Winona State University. She is LifeWorks’ Health Coach Team Lead, and a certified Health & Wellness Coach. She has worked in the wellness industry for over 20 years, and has a passion for empowering people to improve their lifestyle one step at a time.