Sometimes it’s difficult to be positive. Life can be stressful, overwhelming, and pretty frustrating at times. When things seem to be going wrong, it can seem impossible — and a bit annoying — to look on the bright side. However, being positive doesn’t have to mean big changes and smiling even when you’re upset. Sometimes making life more positive can be done with small changes. Something as simple as adding a plant to your desk or taking yourself out for ice cream can push your life in a more positive direction.
Social media is a part of our lives, and will continue to be a part of our lives for the foreseeable future. Social media is being used in a ton of useful ways. It’s created a new way for patients and medical professionals to communicate in the counselling world, it allows people to reach out to others and connect in a way they couldn’t before, and it has made positive movements reach a bigger audience than it’s ever been able to reach before. Social media is growing rapidly – Instagram photos and videos alone get over 1.6 billion likes per day which is one of the reason’s why many industries, like the sports industry, implement it into their marketing strategies. It’s safe to say, social media is here to stay. However, social media also carries with it a level of stress and negativity. For that reason, one small change you can make in your life is to change the way you interact with social media.
Unfollow people who post negative or harmful things if you’re uncomfortable with deleting them altogether. Charge your phone during meals so you have phone-free interactions with family members. When you’re considering using social media to talk about others negatively, put your phone down and call someone to vent, or write down your frustrations instead. By all means, use social media to make connections and gain community, but if your social media is a source of negativity, change a few things. Whether that means controlling what you post, or controlling what you see others post, it’s a small change that can lead to a more positive life.
Your surroundings do have a profound effect on your happiness. However, you don’t need to be on Extreme Home Makeover in order to gain the positivity from a change in your surroundings. Making an upgrade in your environment can be the change needed to go from having a home or office that leaves you feeling unhappy to feeling welcomed and comfortable. The change doesn’t have to be big, it just has to leave you feeling a little better about your environment.
Some people have a problem with doing too much for others and not for themselves. In those cases, in order to promote a more positive life, it’s better to focus on some self-care and less on pleasing others and putting yourself on the back burner. However, there is something to be said for doing things for others. This doesn’t mean making your friends and family a priority over yourself, it just means making a conscious effort to do something for someone else as often as you can. Tell a friend they look good that day, text a family member that you’re thinking about them, buy a few extra cans of vegetables or dog food while you’re grocery shopping and donate it, volunteer to walk a shelter dog, or buy the person’s coffee behind you in the drive thru line. Doing little things for others will bring positivity into your life as well as theirs.
It’s great to spend time with friends and family, especially to work some positivity into your life. However, it’s amazing what a day with yourself can do for your mental wellbeing. Not just spending a day on the couch with yourself and some Netflix, but really talking yourself out on a date. Feeling independent is something that not everyone gets to feel all the time, especially when they are happiest with others. One small change you can make, is learning that you don’t need others for company, that you can be your own company sometimes. Go grab some coffee and read a book in the park, go to a movie by yourself, or take a trip to a bed and breakfast for the weekend. If you’ve always wanted to take a pottery class or a cooking class, go do that with yourself. You’d be surprised how much positivity can come from realizing you are your own best company and that you’re capable of being independent in more than a few ways.
You don’t have to tell yourself affirmations everyday or force yourself to look on the bright side whenever you’re upset. Sometimes positivity is annoying, and not realistic when you’re having an off day. However, by doing something positive everyday, no matter what, you can help your overall sense of happiness. You don’t have to write it down, or say it outloud, but when everything else seems to suck, tell yourself or someone else one thing that is positive.
Congratulate yourself for still deciding to cook dinner, even though your day was awful. Thank your spouse for listening to you vent about how hard things are right now. Tell your dog he’s a good boy. You can also keep a gratitude journal, work to remove unkind dialogue with yourself, or even do a 30-day positivity challenge on your social media.
Bringing positivity into your life doesn’t mean you have to start meditating every morning, reading a ton of self-help books, and stop complaining all the time. Sometimes, you just need to complain a little bit and get it out. When you’re feeling down, it’s a big eye-rolling moment when someone tells you to be positive. However, there’s some truth in a positive mindset and holding yourself to making actionable and positive changes in your life. So unfollow some people on social media, rearrange your bedroom, buy a stranger a coffee, take yourself on a road trip, and do one positive thing each day and you’ll end up seeing some small positive changes in your life.
Guest Post By: Chelsy Ranard