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One thing that makes an incredible difference to your life is your attitude. But did you know there is actually at least one study that proves a positive attitude can actually lengthen your life according to The Ohio Longitudinal Study of Aging and Retirement , carried out by Robert Atchley, PhD in Oxford, Ohio. Over 1,100 people over the age of 50 participated in the study. There were many follow ups during the years. In the 1990s Yale University Psychologist Becca Levy, PhD researched the answers of the participants and compared the answers with the average lifespan of those who completed the survey. She discovered that those who gave answers showing a positive attitude towards aging lived 7.6 years longer than those who didn’t.
If a positive attitude can help you live longer what else can it help you achieve? The answer is – almost anything!
Positive Thinking and the Impact it Can Have on Your Life
Your mind is a lot more powerful than you think. Growing research is starting to prove the many benefits that can come from positive thinking. Not only do optimists tend to have a lot less stress and live healthier lives, but they’re also more inclined to overcome some of life’s setbacks. Though, “looking at the bright side” or finding the “silver lining” may not be your first reaction to coping with the obstacle of life, thinking positively can significantly impact your life for the better.
Positive Thinking Helps in Stressful Circumstances
Start thinking positively. When you’re hit with an especially difficult problem, a little optimism can go a long way to improving your circumstances (or at least the way you feel about them). Pessimists tend to dwell on the negative, what’s wrong, what can’t be changed, etc. This line of thinking leads to increased stress and no productive solutions for how to deal with the problem. End negative thoughts and improve your life.
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Positive thinking can help you to see your circumstances for what they are, review what you can control and change, and give you the motivation to move past this especially stressful situation.
Positive Thinking Can Enhance Self-Improvement
Self-improvement is something everyone should be focused on regularly. It is only through continual learning and change that you’re able to be the best version of yourself. The sheer thought of, “I can do it”, can drive you to master things that a defeated attitude won’t help you with. Whether you’re contemplating going to Casa Capri recovery program for a bad drug habit, or trying to work on your professional skills so you can land that promotion, positive thinking is half the battle. When you believe in your mind that you have the ability to be and do better, everything else seems to fall into place and the drive you need to persevere is somehow manifested within.
Positive Thinking Boosts Confidence
If you’re suffering from low self-esteem one of the first things recommended is to change the way you think. When you look at yourself and pick out everything that is wrong, essentially you begin to feel worse about yourself and your ability to get things done. However, if you flip the script and start making positive affirmations about yourself like, “I am worthy”, “I can accomplish this”, “I am attractive”, you start to feel it and therefore act on those positive thoughts.
Positive Thinking Can Boost Your Immune System
If you knew that having good thoughts regularly would improve your immune system, would you be willing to think positively? Well, studies are increasingly finding that when you’re happy, the body releases super disease-fighting chemicals that can help to alleviate symptoms for everything from the common cold or flu to cancer.
There’s something about having a positive outlook on life that does the body good. If you’ve been plagued by negative energy, thoughts, and behaviors, it’s time to retrain your brain. Start looking on the bright side of things more often and state positive affirmations regularly to encourage yourself to have good thoughts about who you are and the positive change you can accomplish in your life.
- Your health
- Your happiness
- Your appearance
- Your success in life
- Your career
- Your social life
- Your confidence and self esteem
- Your family
- Your finances
The list above is far from complete but you get what I mean when I tell you that your attitude is everything. Just look at the world around you and compare those who have a positive attitude and those who always see the negative in everything. Who has a better life? Who is more successful? Who is happier?
So the question is – what is your attitude like? Are you optimistic or a negative person and how does that affect you?
To answer the above questions you need to talk to friends and ask them what they think then compare that with how you think you are. Once you get a real idea of how you approach life – positively or negatively – then you can begin to promote positive change in your life.
One important thing you need to consider carefully is how your actions and behaviour match your attitude. For example, if you believe you think negatively you need to not only change your attitude so you think more positively, you need to behave and act differently too. Just changing your attitude is not enough. First think about your attitude in different areas of your life such as those listed above in the previous section. Now think about how your attitude causes you to behave. If you had a more positive attitude what would you do differently?
There are two choices open to you:
1. change your negative attitude and hope that will change the way you act
2. change how you act and hope that will change your attitude
I think the best is to work on both but start with your attitude. What you are aiming for is for the two to be in balance – positive attitude and positive behaviour and action.
Inner Conflicts and Fear
One thing you probably need to work on is the inner conflicts going on in your mind which come from fear and how to end negative thoughts. These conflicts are going on all the time causing you to be in a prison of negativity.
If you want to know more about what you can do to help yourself deal with negative thinking check out my top recommended books here – reading helps you understand and learn how to take action.
What do you want to change?
You have it in your power to change many things in your life. Some things of course are beyond your control and you must accept those things and concentrate on the things you can change. But how do you start?
Second, stop being critical and focus on the positives.
Once you decide what needs to be changed you can start to think about what you need to do to make those changes. Your positive attitude is vital for your motivation to change. So what do want to change about your attitude? Do you want more self confidence? If so, in what situations? What do you want more of in your life? Is it friends, is it love, is it more respect at work? What exactly is it?
Say you have a negative attitude towards your appearance and this is stopping you from living your life, getting out and meeting people. This is an attitude you should change. If you have a negative attitude towards yourself then your self esteem will suffer and others will have a negative attitude towards you too. Stop comparing yourself to others and realise you are truly unique. Likewise, confidence in yourself creates confidence in others and because others respond positively your self esteem will increase.
These beliefs exist because you have learnt them, so that means you can unlearn them. That is great news! If, for example, you want to change your thinking and become more positive you can do so because you have learnt the skill of being negative. So how do you do this? One of the most powerful ways to do this is to use self hypnosis. This is guaranteed to work because this is the same process you use to learn beliefs in the first place. Makes sense to use the same system to unlearn something and replace it with something more positive and helpful. To download The Power of Positivity program which will help you develop a robustly positive attitude that will catapult you to success and happiness.
Look at the beliefs connected with your goals and make sure you consider what you think you deserve, if you are capable and if your goal right for you. Is your goal really possible and do you really want it? You must be fully committed to achieve your goals because the best ones require a lot of work.
If you look at the beliefs and thoughts of champions and successful people you’ll see they all have very positive thoughts. To be a winner, you need to think like a winner. Here is a short list of some winning thoughts that all successful people have:
- You can learn to be a winner
- You can create your own future reality
- You can choose your beliefs
- Failure doesn’t exist
- Effort brings success
- The only limit to your success and happiness is you
- There is positive in everything
- You don’t need alcohol or drugs to help you cope.
On the last point above, drugs are a particularly negative and damaging substance that many resort to when all else fails. If you are caught in the nightmare of taking drugs you need addiction recovery and the correct mindset will help you succeed. Never avoid seeking the help you need!
I hope that this page has inspired you to change your attitude and become more positive. I hope that this inspiration will turn into action that will transform you and improve your life.
For even more help with your attitude and with building your self esteem and confidence check out my book, Self Esteem Secrets, and start building your positivity and confidence today . It will show you the way to a happier and more confident you.
- Robert C. Atchley, 2007, “Ohio Longitudinal Study on Aging and Retirement, 1975-1995”, Harvard Dataverse, V1
Website Author and Editor Bio
Karl Perera is a fully qualified Life Coach (DipLC), Teacher (MA) and author of Self Esteem Secrets. He has taught at various universities including Durham, Leicester and Anglia Ruskin, Cambridge. He has run More-SelfEsteem.com since 1997 and is an expert in Self Esteem and Self Confidence.