When the situations of life don’t “feel” positive, it’s often hard to think positive. But fortunately, it’s not impossible.
Being a positive thinker doesn’t mean living with a Pollyanna/rose-colored-glasses mentality. It simply means choosing to intentionally look for the best in things and find reasons to be positive, rather than intentionally or even inadvertently focusing on the negative aspects of people, life, and situations.
We can’t control our circumstances, but we can always control our thoughts about them. And when we change the way we think, we in turn change the way we feel and live. Proverbs 23:7 says, “For as he thinks in his heart, so is he” (nkjv). Our thoughts determine who we are and how we live our lives.
If you have found yourself becoming a negative or pessimistic thinker lately, even if you have lots of reasons to justify that type of attitude, or if you feel as though you’ve always been a negative person and think it’s impossible to change, might you consider incorporating a few of these tips into your everyday routines?
When you invite God to start helping you change the way you think, you’ll notice that your perspective and outlook and the way you feel inside will begin changing too. A happier life with more peace and joy—despite adversities—could be one positive thought away.
1. Express gratitude
Ask God to help you live with an awareness of your blessings. Notice the little things that bring flutters of joy to your heart—a butterfly, a streak of warm sunshine, the laughter of your child, a hug from a loved one. Try to focus on the things you have, rather than the things you don’t have.
2. Look for beauty
Life can be ugly, and at times we get so caught up in seeing the ugly, we neglect to notice the beauty around us. Take time to really look out the window as you drive today. Notice the blue sky, the green trees, the bunny hopping across the field. Smell the flowers, savor the aroma of dinner on the stove, and feel the softness of your baby’s hair. Beauty is all around us in a million different forms, if only we choose to not overlook it and miss out.
3. Don’t compare yourself with anyone else
Not only because doing so feeds your insecurities but also because comparison is the thief of joy. You are you, and God made you unique in every way—gifted with abilities, traits, and talents that nobody else has. Rather than focusing on how you don’t feel you measure up, most likely against some standard you were never meant to meet, focus on your positive attributes alone.
4. Don’t overthink problems
The more we overthink problems—letting our imaginations run wild with worry and fear and stress—the bigger those problems become. Instead of thinking the worst, try to think the best. Instead of focusing on the negatives of a situation, try to think of some positives that might come out of it. If you’re to overthink, be overly positive. A little too much optimism never hurt anyone.
5. Change the way you typically think
by asking God to help you recognize each negative thought that pops into your mind, reject that thought, and then think of a more positive true thought instead. Simply put, cultivate optimism in your patterns of thinking. Instead of seeing the glass half-empty, intentionally tell yourself to see the glass half-full. If you tend to think the worst when a problem arises, decide you are not going to do that and try to think of the best-case scenario instead. Making these practices a habit in your everyday life helps foster an amazing transformation in your brain and thought patterns.
6. Invite God to be a part of your day, your life, and your mind’s transformation
When we ask for His intervention in our hearts and minds, we open the door for Him to begin a work in us that we could never accomplish on our own. Through His strength and perseverance, we can overcome the pull toward negative thinking and retrain our minds to think optimistically, instead of pessimistically. After a few weeks of practical thought control and intentional efforts to be positive, new habits will form that are good for us and our lives!
If you want to be a more positive person and live a more positive life, consider trying to implement each of these tips every day. Think positive; be positive; live positive. It’s a lifestyle that’s possible for everyone and always ushers in more peace, more joy, and more happiness!
If you’ve ever struggled with your thought life and are ready to start living with a more positive, faith-filled outlook—even in the midst of difficult circumstances—then Unsinkable Faith: God-Filled Strategies to Transform the Way You Think, Feel, and Live is the book you need to help you discover practical strategies and tips to steer your life in a new positive direction. Find out more information about Tracie at her blog at www.traciemiles.com and on all social media outlets.