The Power of Optimism: How to Stay Positive During Hard Times



by Michael Corthell

You have your positive mindset, and things have been going pretty well, but then things 'seemingly' start to take a turn for the negative. We've all experienced days when it seems that there's nothing but problem after problem. Days like these threaten our strong, positive mindsets and may, if not dealt with immediately, stop us from moving forward.

We may even tell ourselves that we should have seen it coming. Maybe we did see it coming but didn't want to believe it. This can cause guilt. What do we do? The first thing is we accept these negatives as inevitable and don't panic. Then, we get back to basics.


Understand:

  • Everything happens for a reason and is temporary.
  • Happiness in life is dependent on your approach to life, not what happens to you.
  • That there are things that are going right in your life.
  • You have people that have your back, 100%.
  • And know what you care about most and what is expendable.
  • That you are ultimately in control and you choose how you react.
  • Your history and resilience in past, tough situations.
  • Negative times don't define you, but your way of dealing with them does.
  • Whining, complaining, denial or anger or other negative ways we can use when things go wrong won't change the situation—only positive actions will.

Do NOT

  • Panic or THINK too far ahead—compartmentalize your day.  
  • Immediately to blame and criticize.
  • Lash out at people.
  • Medicate yourself.
  • Neglect your diet or other basic needs.
  • Ignore your inner voice.
  • Dwell on what should have been.
  • Control (what is out of your control).
  • Relive past negative events as a basis of comparison.
  • Say "what if" or "why me"  
  • Pay attention to others' emotional opinions.
  • Resent others' 'smooth sailing' happiness.
  • Isolate yourself.

DO

  • Practice ACCEPTANCE.
  • Stay in the present.
  • Have realistic expectations for the situation and for yourself.
  • Focus on what you can and cannot change.
  • Get moving one step at a time — start small. 
  • Focus on the possible.
  • Look for the lesson in all this. 
  • Stay positive remembering your strengths.
  • Spend time with positive people who have your back.
  • Appreciate the positive things, things that are going well.
  • Love, respect, and care of yourself.
  • Think healthy rather than just tuning out or completely unplugging.
  • Ask for help and get honest, reliable opinions.
  • Gain perspective and relativity. Ask yourself how you will feel in 5 or 10 years.
  • Exercise and get outdoors.
  • Laugh. 
  • Help another person.
  • Write.
  • Read and reread motivational, inspirational, or encouraging words from others.
  • Think and assess. Give yourself some time to reset.
Lastly, when the good times return and they will, you always want to receive them with a spirit of gratitude, because as positive thinkers we all know that the more gratitude expressed, the more we are given to be grateful for.

Know and have faith, that all will be well.

___________________

The Power of Optimism!

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