Look on the bright side. How often do you follow this advice when you are feeling down? There are more benefits to seeing the upside than just boosting your mood. Researchers are finding more and more evidence proving a link between a positive attitude and optimal health.
Adopting a positive outlook on life can not only improve your ability to cope with and reduce stress, but it can also reduce the risk of death from cardiovascular disease, increase your immunity to the common cold, lower rates of depression and help you live longer.
How is this possible?
Positive thinking helps you to clear your mind of negative self-talk. These negative thoughts can come from a variety of sources including fear, pressure from your friends and family, or by overanalyzing situations to the point of inaction. Embracing optimism boosts self-confidence and helps you to think outside the box to seek out new opportunities for growth. Not only are you tackling obstacles that may have prevented you in the past, you are also working to reduce stress and anxiety associated with those hurdles.
The best part of adopting a positive attitude is that it encourages you to work harder to reach your dreams, which only makes you more optimistic for the future. It is a self-fulfilling prophecy of the best kind. Your self-motivation increases along with your self-efficacy, or your belief in your abilities to be successful in life. This creates a “can-do” mentality that goes in an upward spiral that you continually feed with positive thoughts. The more positive you are, the more you accomplish over time.
You are ready to swap the glass half-empty for the glass half-full.
Where do you begin?
It all starts with you. Is there a health goal you want to accomplish but you feel that you are unable to make it happen? Do not give up on yourself so easily!
Spend some time carefully thinking about your vision and be realistic about what you can do within the next several months. Create smaller goals that you can track on a weekly basis. Checking these off your list will help you feel better in the long run, and more likely to realize that big dream.
Another surefire way to increase positivity is to express gratitude on a regular basis. Showing appreciation for both the good and the bad allows you to reflect on lessons learned while also helping put things in perspective. No matter how difficult your situation may be, finding at least one thing to be grateful for gives you a brighter outlook on life and makes you more mindful of the tone of your thoughts.
A healthy lifestyle is about more than a healthy diet and exercise. Positive thinking makes you feel better because your emotional and mental well-being are just as important for optimal health. Go ahead and put a smile on your face today!