Charlie Chaplin famously said “You’ll never find a rainbow if you’re looking down”.
You can deny it, but WE control our outlook on life, not the other way around. Life is tough, for everyone. Especially in such politically and economically fraught times as these, but doom and gloom do not have to reign supreme – unless we let them.
Don’t worry, we have some helpful tips to keep you all positive when you’re feeling a bit hard done by:
1. Take care of yourself
Exercise is an instant mood elevator and the food you eat also affects how we feel about ourselves.
I know it’s tempting, but if you sit on your sofa all day and chow down on a Big Mac, you’re probably not going to feel great. Instead, try going for a walk in the park, get some fresh air and enjoy a fresh orange juice while you’re at it. We’re willing to bet MONEY that the latter option is far more smile inducing than the first.
Be aware of what you’re doing with yourself in this way and what you’re putting into your body and you’ll soon find yourself feeling happy from the inside and out and THEN you can tackle the world far more positively.
2. Be grateful for those wonderful things in your life
It’s easy to get caught up in how much your life potentially sucks but every now and then, stop yourself and consider how much it really doesn’t.
Take a moment to write down everything you’re grateful for. Your Mum? Your partner? Your cat? One Direction? Dairy Milk bars with Oreo cookie bits in?
Despite how low you may feel, there will be a handful of things that you think fondly upon. Every time you feel blue, return to that list and focus on those positives in your life.
3. Set yourself some goals
Forget One Direction, sometimes it feels a bit ‘No Direction’ in our lives, and this has the ability to make us feel really rather rubbish.
Make yourself a cup of tea and think about where you’d like to be in a year – both professionally and personally. Then set yourself some goals and ‘to-dos’ of how you’re going to reach that position.
These goals will be short and long-term – from as simple as, a task to do that very day, to something you’d like to achieve in 6 months time: setting yourself off in the right direction will immediately turn your attitude to the more positive and sunny side.
This is never going to be a BAD idea, is it?
Try to complete ONE random act of kindness, every day, for a complete stranger, and don’t expect any payback. It doesn’t have to be a big deal, just something selfless e.g. helping an old lady across the road; giving some hot food to the homeless; helping someone find their way in the city.
Once you take this focus off of yourself and on to someone else through kindness, you’ll quickly find your self-esteem enjoy a momentary boost. Do this regularly, and you’re laughing (literally, I would have thought. I mean, you’ll be THAT happy).
5. Communicate positively
You probably don’t even notice it, but when we’re going through tricky patches in life, we tend to communicate far more negatively.
Pay attention to the words you use, your language and the way you express yourself. If you’re talking in negatives, you will FEEL negative. Start using positive words, phrases and attitudes – even you don’t quite believe them just yet. You’ll be surprised at how much it affects your mood.
6. Have a creative outlet
Everyone needs one of these, whether you’re creative or not.
Do SOMETHING every day that is an expression of yourself: flower arranging, singing, playing an instrument, dancing, writing, drawing, interpretative ribbon dance – anything that you enjoy, even for a brief moment – and feel your negativity pour out of you with every creative step. You’ll instantly feel better and more optimistic about yourself.
7. Don’t be so hard on yourself
You remember when you were little and your sibling/friend would grab your arm and hit you with it, taunting you with “why are you hitting yourself why are you hitting yourself why are you hitting yourself”……? Yeah, well DON’T hit yourself.
Being negative about yourself isn’t going to get you anywhere is it? Negativity simply breeds MORE negativity. So shake it off and carry on with positive reinforcement only.
Be as supportive to yourself as you are to your loved ones.
If something tickles you, laugh. Don’t forget to smile and see the funny side or situations. Lighten your mood and find humour every single day. You’ll find your overall attitude quickly becomes more positive.
9. Don’t forget to relax
Always set aside some time for you to recharge your batteries – once a day, preferably. This can be anything from a quick 10 minutes to a few hours, but if your phone needs recharging, then so do you.
10. Don’t be afraid to fail
You think every successful or happy person in the world has managed it without some failure? Of course not! It’s what you DO with that failure that determines your fate.
We don’t always get what we want and we WON’T always be free from failures. Don’t let the fear of failure stop you in what you want to do and when you do inevitably lose at something, pick yourself up and keep going.
If we don’t have the bad every now and then we don’t appreciate the good. Learn from your falls so you can climb higher next time.