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Your Thoughts Are a Reflection of Your Life

What we believe and think will project through to how we live our lives. Too many people don’t believe this. They often attribute their misfortunes to fate or chance. While there are some elements of this within our lives, how we think can alter our future.

If you are a negative thinking person, you won’t see solutions where they exist. You will knock down any idea that comes your way, thinking it is not possible. Conversely, when you keep a positive outlook, every idea has the potential to become a solution. You will find the path much quicker than when you don’t accept any ideas.

These scenarios of positive and negative thinking, play out for people over and over. Positive people advance where negative people stay in one place or even fall behind.

You will flock to people who share the same mental attitude. Negativity will attract negative thinkers and positivity will attract positive thinkers. When you get a group of positive thinkers together, who all are open to many ideas, the possibilities are endless. Negative thinkers will simply find more excuses why their lives aren’t working for them. They will recruit as many people as possible to this way of thinking.

Not every idea that positive people come up with will work. It would be wrong to state that they have all the answers. It’s just they are willing to try anything and evaluate what works and what needs improvement. They will be quicker to abandon those ideas that aren’t working.

The good news is negative thinkers can turn their situations around. They first have to admit they have a problem. Then, they have to learn how to reflect on what they were doing and counter the negative thought patterns. Using affirmations are a great way to reverse the cycle.

In reality, negativity is a bad habit. It’s easy to get caught up in it due to all the negativity that exists in the world. News stories, friends, even parents, can all be contributors that help us lead negative lives ourselves.

Don’t beat yourself up if you find yourself being a negative thinker. As long as you take steps to reverse it, you can live a better life going forward. Your family, friends, and colleagues will appreciate the new you. The process will take some time, but it will pay dividends for the rest of your life.

Make Small Improvements Daily

Who doesn’t want to improve their lives? If you look at self-help and productivity information, you will see it’s quite popular and growing. People want to improve. However, one of the biggest challenges people face is they try to do too much too fast. When you build up your improvement plan, you have a much better chance of success by taking small steps.

Determine what you want to improve. You can’t tackle everything. Therefore, make a priority of the aspects of your life you want to improve. Once you have that, you can determine a plan on how to improve. For instance, suppose you want to improve a skill at work or learn a new one. Learn what is involved in getting up to speed, and then map out small steps that you can take to accomplish that goal.

People make the mistake of trying to fast-track their improvements. If you tried to learn your new skill in two days, you could become confused. That would have the opposite effect, which is counterproductive. Try breaking up what you need to learn into small, 15-minute chunks. Then, schedule those learning activities for the next few months.

Colleges have been structuring their learning in this manner for years. Students take a course for an hour or two at a time. Then, they move on to their next class. That is spread out over several months. The reason colleges have been doing it this way is because it works.

While you can take on multiple improvements at the same time, don’t go overboard. You need to make sure your current improvements are working. Otherwise, you will get overwhelmed. When that happens, you run the risk of not continuing with all that you’ve mapped out.

Don’t listen to what others believe you should improve. It’s your life, and you are the one that will have to go through the improvements.

If you should happen to let your quest towards improvement slip, don’t be too hard on yourself. Life is busy, and working on improvements is not something people include in their schedule. It is a mindset shift, and it takes a while to get used to the new ways. Therefore, you should keep the sessions short. By making small changes daily, the improvements will become habits. After a while, they will become second nature. The fact that you kept your activities small gave you a better chance of being successful at them.

Using Positive Affirmations to Combat Stress

Many people use affirmations for personal development and to help them meet their life goals. But did you know you can use affirmations to build resilience and combat stress?

Whether it’s a one-off stress like having to give a presentation or an ongoing stressful issue, you can create the right affirmations to support you through. Affirmations will help you deal better with current stress, and over time, prevent future anxiety.

  1. Know Your Negative Enemy

Identifying your negative thoughts is the first step in working out the best affirmations for you and your situation.

Take a moment to think of all the beliefs that come up when you think about your stressful event. Do you worry about not knowing what to say at a party, or freezing while you try to give a presentation? Write down every negative thought that pops into your head. Make the conscious decision to move away from those negative beliefs.

  1. Turn the Negatives into Positives

Now you have your list of negative thoughts; you can take each one and turn it into a positive. Make strong positive statements and remind yourself of times in the past when you coped well in similar situations.

When you develop your affirmations, tie them back to times when you have succeeded in the past. If you can’t think of any, ask your partner, friend, or colleague to help you. Likely they’ll have a much more positive view of your skills and achievements than you do!

Write down some encouraging phrases to get you through, like ‘I’m feeling stressed, but I will be ok,’ ‘I can do this,’ ‘When this is over, I will be so proud of myself.’

  1. Keep Your Affirmations Realistic

Affirmations are not magic. Keep your affirmations in proportion to what you can do and how you feel. If they are too ambitious, they can make you feel more anxious than before.  And if you have a misstep or you fail, then you’ll feel even worse than before.

Maybe you get anxious about public speaking, whether it’s giving a presentation or having a job interview. Your affirmations will help you even more if you know you have done everything possible to be prepared.

If you worry about getting stage fright or going blank, prepare every aspect of your speech or presentation. Remind yourself that you know how to do this, you know your subject.

Anticipate what might go wrong and work out strategies to prevent or deal with it, from having spare notes in case the technology fails to having a glass of water nearby if you feel faint.

5 Creative Ways to Calm a Chaotic Mind

Do you ever feel like you can’t escape your mind? Maybe it’s always spinning out of control, or perhaps you have a lot of thoughts. A lot of people experience chaos in their own minds, and this can make things difficult when you’re trying to work toward your goals. The next time your mind is filled with confusion, try one of these five creative ways to alleviate the stress.

  1. Keep it Busy 

There’s a delicate balance between keeping your mind busy without overcrowding it. It’s one thing to occupy your mind so it doesn’t wander, but it’s a whole different ball game when you start stressing out about endless to-do lists and information overload. Try to write 3-5 things you want to accomplish every day — and be sure to add at least one thing that is purely for fun. This will keep your mind busy without getting you too stressed.

  1. Help Others 

When was the last time you extended a helping hand to someone who needs it? Our brains tend to calm down when we’re in “helper mode” because the focus is on others rather than our own problems or stresses.

  1. Pick up a Creative Hobby 

We all have a creative side, whether it’s deep down or you’re continually flexing your creative muscles. Picking up a creative hobby gives your brain a nice, healthy break from the usual grind. Plus, it allows you to expand your intelligence with new forms of thinking. Win-win!

  1. Care for your Physical Being 

The mind and bodywork hand in hand a lot, so if you aren’t caring for your physical being, you may notice some stress going on in your head. Take time to care for your body — work out more, take a walk, draw a bath, or snooze your alarm clock. There are lots of ways to reenergize your body so that you can take on more in your mind!

  1. Connect with Others 

Helping others and connecting with other people are two totally different things, but both are essential aspects of cultivating an active, healthy mind. As humans, we need socialization. We thrive when we are part of a tribe. We crave human interaction time, so get out there and get social! Every laugh and bit of chatter will feed your mind in countless ways. Call a friend and have lunch in the park. It doesn’t have to be a big production, since the goal is simple human connection.

Micro-Habits You Can Start Today for a Happier Life

Ask anyone what they desire in life, and more often than not, the answer comes back as some variation of “be happier.” The pursuit of happiness has been around since time began, the topic being a discussion point since the days of Plato and Socrates.

Is happiness truly so hard to find?

Thankfully happiness is a lot simpler than most people think. By creating some new micro-habits in your life, not only will you be happier, but the people around you will likewise start feeling those same warm fuzzies. Where do you begin?

  1. Start your day off right. When you wake up, think of something for which you’re thankful. By beginning in gratitude, you set your mind in a positive place before you even get out of bed.
  2. Follow-up with a morning routine that inspires. Listen to a podcast over breakfast, read a chapter out of an inspirational book, listen to music that makes your heart soar, take time for yoga or meditation. Embrace whatever you need to do to launch yourself into the day feeling upbeat and inspired.
  3. Stay in the moment. Rather than get caught up in the trials and tribulations of the day ask yourself where you are right now. Turn off the electronics and take a moment to breathe. Find that inner calm, and remind yourself that right now, right here, you are OK. Focus on what’s in front of you and let the future go.
  4. Listen more. By taking the time to listen to what someone else has to say, both of you benefit. Listening is what leads to genuine intimacy and deeper relationships, and makes the person doing the talking feel a surge of happiness of their own.
  5. Sharpen your saw. The old story goes that a man walking through the woods sees someone laboring mightily to cut down a tree. As he watches, he points out that the process would go much faster if the woodcutter were to sharpen his saw. The woodcutter replies, “I realize that, but I don’t have time to stop.” By stopping to sharpen your saw – resting and recharging – you’re capable of so much more later on. Take breaks that give energy back not only to your body but your mind.
  6. Hang around, happy people. We’re affected deeply by the mood of those around us. By gravitating toward people who make us feel good, we help our mood.
  7. Take care of yourself. It’s hard to feel happy if you’re not feeling well. Micro habits work particularly well here. Drink more water. Get up and stretch. Add more leafy greens to your diet. Whatever you choose, know that you’re benefitting more than your body, but also your mind.

There are many ways to find happiness. While you may start with this list, be sure to explore ideas of your own. Remember, you don’t have to do great big sweeping things to change your attitude – just practicing small micro-habits is enough to change your life positively.