Challenge Yourself to Be Positive

Posted by Editor Kristi Heidel

The following contains excerpts from Megan Grandinetti, Challenge Yourself to Be Positive, Above the Law (Oct 9, 2014).

There have been studies done in the field of positive psychology that show that exercises like eliminating negativity from your life are a great way for you to increase your happiness and reduce depression. Below are some tips from Megan Graindinetti’s article on how you can lose your negativity and challenge yourself to be more positive:

Find a way to spin the problem. Every time you feel the need to express a negative thought, find a way to spin it into something neutral or positive before you let it leave your lips. Rather than, “I have to cancel our plans tonight because Partner X is being a jerk,” try: “I’m tied up with work tonight, but I’ll be happy to spend tomorrow night with you instead.” And instead of “I got this awful new assignment that is going to be a total time-suck,” try: “I got a new assignment, and I think I’ll have the opportunity to learn a great deal.”

Tell your friends and colleagues about your new positivity challenge. Having people around who will not only support you in your positivity challenge, but will also hold you accountable, is key to your success. Your friends can also annoyingly point out that your neutral or positive statement could be construed as negative, thus helping you hone your positivity skill as you go along.

If you don’t have anything nice to say… There are going to be times when your brain, although brilliant, can’t think of a positive way to look at a situation. In those times, rather than sputtering out negativity, try to keep it to yourself. When I was in that situation, I found that after a few hours, when my anger/sadness/resentment subsided, I was able to look at the problem with a fresh, positive perspective.

Give it at least three weeks. I work with a lot of clients on modifying behaviors, and whether it’s giving up sweets or getting into a new workout routine, real changes only begin to take shape when you have given yourself enough time. If you can be positive for three whole weeks (21 days), you should begin to notice a difference.

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