Life is full of surprises. In an average day, a seemingly endless number of unexpected events can occur that might create stress, worry, and frustration. But instead of letting these negative emotions take over, what if you were to make a conscious decision to have a great day?
Try these techniques to bring joy to each day:
- Use self-suggestion. First thing in the morning, make a conscious decision to have a great day. As you’re brushing your teeth, look yourself in the eye. Tell yourself, “I’m going to have a great day,” and mean it. This is your chance to set yourself up for a fantastic day, whether you’ll be with your family, at work, or hanging out with friends.
- Empower yourself. You’re taking control of what might have turned into a negative situation when you decide to allow events to just roll on by and not affect you adversely. Take the bull by the horns and state to yourself what you will and won’t do in a challenging situation. Refuse to allow someone or something other than yourself to ruin your day. When you do this, you’re saying “no” to negativity. You’re taking a stand. When you’re resolved in this way, your healthy stubbornness will ensure you have a great day.
- Recognize what really matters. When you encounter a challenging situation, prompt yourself to see the bigger picture. If one part of a project isn’t going well, identify that you’ve been in similar circumstances before and will most likely be in them again someday. Know, however, that such situations don’t last, and easy times will come again, too.
- Remind yourself of the positive. Remember that you still have other things to do today and the trying situation isn’t the only event you’ll encounter. Before the day is out, you might win the lottery or get that promotion you’ve wanted. Or maybe all the traffic lights will be green on your way home. Whether big or small, positive things are likely to happen today.
- Consider a challenging event as an adventure. When you look back, you’ll find that many prior situations that you were initially disappointed in turned out to be great opportunities for you. Shift your paradigm from “Oh, this is bad” to “This could be interesting.”
- Discover the silver lining. What are the positives about a trying situation? You may feel challenged at first to find something positive about a difficult occurrence. However, with some practice, this will become easier. You’ll eventually be able to identify what the real beauty of the tough event is.
When life gets you down, you always have a choice. You can either let yourself be completely overtaken with the weight of your challenge or decide to have a great day.
Turn negative situations into adventures and seek the silver lining in every challenging event. You have all the power you need within you to make your life as enjoyable as you want it to be!
A Checklist for Keeping a Positive Attitude
A positive attitude doesn’t happen on its own. A positive attitude is the result of your beliefs, expectations, habits, and focus. A positive mental attitude can have a positive impact on your relationships, creativity, career, and overall enjoyment. You’re more capable when you feel good and have high expectations.
Use a checklist to help you maintain your positive attitude:
__ Take a smile with you everywhere you go. Smiles are free, feel good, and can lift your mood. Science has shown that your physiology and body can lead your emotions. Smiling can enhance your mood and your outlook regarding the future.
__ Create a morning routine that focuses on happiness. You have a morning routine to get yourself cleaned up and out the door on time. Build a routine that boosts your attitude too. Consider the things that fill you with feeling of positivity.
• Take a walk.
• Read something inspiring.
• Eat a healthy breakfast.
• Listen to inspiring music.
__ Ask yourself optimistic questions. Questions change your focus. Ask positive questions and you’ll receive positive answers.
• What’s great about this situation?
• How can I use this to my advantage?
• Whom do I love?
__ Spend time with others that have a positive attitude. It’s challenging to maintain a better attitude than the people you spend time with. Seek out others with a positive attitude and spend as much time with them as you can.
__ Create a gratitude list. It’s easy to focus on what you don’t have in life. Change your focus and remind yourself of all the great things you already have. Each morning and evening, rattle off a list of the people, things, and experiences that make you feel grateful.
__ Think happy thoughts. Left to its own devices, your mind will run wild. It’s so random, that you’re bound to think negative thoughts some of the time. You can control your thoughts. Keep them positive.
__ Make exciting plans. It’s easier to be happy with a few exciting things planned for the near future. Planning a trip to Paris would be nice, but simple things work well, too. A planned trip to the movies or the spa with a friend can make the week more enjoyable. Have something you can look forward to each week.
__ Remember happy memories. When you’re feeling down, remember some of the good times you’ve had. Spend a few minutes remembering your senior prom or the first time you bowled 300. Five minutes remembering positive experiences can get your attitude back on track. What is your happiest memory from childhood? What about the last five years?
__ Enjoy the simple things. Many of the simple things are the most meaningful. Playing with your child or enjoying an ice cream cone can be as enjoyable as making a million dollars or scuba diving in Hawaii. Enjoy the simple things you do each day.
__ Change your expectations. Part of unhappiness comes from unreasonable expectations. Life isn’t supposed to be easy. Sure, you’ll have many easy days. But you can decide to find happiness in the challenging days, too. What you consider to be a “good” day or a “bad” day is influenced by your expectations.
__ Do something nice, anonymously. It’s thrilling to do something nice for someone without their knowledge. You feel like a superhero. Mow your neighbor’s grass or send someone flowers. Give a gift card to the elderly couple down the street. Do something and keep your involvement a secret.
Go over this checklist each day and check off the items you accomplished. Soon, these activities will become a habit – and so will your positive attitude!