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How To Change Negative Thinking Into Positive Thinking

How To Change Negative Thinking Into Positive Thinking

Negative thinking can start a downward spiral — we’ve all been through it at one point or another. At some point, you’ve got to haul yourself up and embrace positivity. Positive thinking can be the cure-all you need to start down a happier path in life. Here are some suggestions to help you out with that.

1. Remind yourself to think positively every day

With hard work, determination, and strength, nothing is impossible. Negative thinking is common, but too often it is harmful to the body, mind, and soul. Each time you have a negative thought, redirect it to a positive channel. Find the positive in the negative. It is going to be difficult, but it becomes easier with practice. In the long run, you will be relaxed more often and enjoy life a whole lot more.

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2. Start reading positive quotes

Reading positive affirmations helps give you the motivation you need for the day. It’s time to turn the television off and get reading. It will lift the spirits and help you feel more alive and radiant. If you don’t have an appropriate book on hand, go online and do some Google searches. Or, drop by the library and spend some time among the bookshelves there. You are bound to come up with a ton of quotes to help you feel better. Just get up and be proactive. You will be grateful for it soon enough.

3. Begin meditating and picturing nature in your mind

Picturing nature in your mind helps you feel more relaxed and positive. When you have an internal sense of peace and bliss, you are more mindful of your surroundings. Practicing meditation has been shown to reduce stress, improve calm, and increase happiness and mindfulness. Like anything, it takes continual practice to reap the full benefits. Imagine a calming destination and transport yourself there. You’ll be surprised with how rewarding this can be.

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4. Take time to do the things you like

When you start looking forward to something, your mind stays proactive. You feel fully functional. So, plan a day with things that give you real happiness and aid you in your quest to think positively. Life is too short to only do what you are forced to do. Go skiing, travel the world, run with the bulls — do anything that makes you step outside of your comfort zone.

5. Believe that you can change your thoughts

Sometimes, the belief is all that matters. As they say, you can do anything you put your mind to. If you think you can’t change your thinking, then it’s likely that you won’t. However, with a positive mindset, just about anything is possible. Just believe that good things will happen, and things tend to fall into place.

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6. Remember that nothing is permanent

Nothing is permanent — that’s one fact that nobody can undermine. If you take the time to truly digest it, it’s a lot easier to start thinking positively. Nothing is set in stone and you can work on changing the things that you are unhappy with. Whether it be your relationships, your health, your professional life — there are things you can do right now to be happier in the future.

7. Embrace the negative and positive

Sometimes, you’ve got to remind yourself that where there is darkness there is also light. The truth is that no matter how hard we try, we are going to have some sort of negativity in our lives at times. Life is a mixed bag. Everyone has there own struggles, and most of us come out unscathed on the other side. Just remember to look for the good in every situation — maybe you’ll be surprised.

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Ramanpreet Kaur

Currently a student but don't know what direction to go in: Let us see if writing gets me anywhere :)

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Last Updated on September 20, 2018

8 Ways to Train Your Brain to Learn Faster and Remember More

8 Ways to Train Your Brain to Learn Faster and Remember More

You go to the gym to train your muscles. You run outside or go for hikes to train your endurance. Or, maybe you do neither of those, but still wish you exercised more.

Well, here is how to train one of the most important parts of your body: your brain.

When you train your brain, you will:

  • Avoid embarrassing situations. You remember his face, but what was his name?
  • Be a faster learner in all sorts of different skills. No problem for you to pick up a new language or new management skill.
  • Avoid diseases that hit as you get older. Alzheimer’s will not be affecting you.

So how to train your brain and improve your cognitive skills?

1. Work your memory

Twyla Tharp, a NYC-based renowned choreographer has come up with the following memory workout:

When she watches one of her performances, she tries to remember the first twelve to fourteen corrections she wants to discuss with her cast without writing them down.

If you think this is anything less than a feat, then think again. In her book The Creative Habit she says that most people cannot remember more than three.

The practice of both remembering events or things and then discussing them with others has actually been supported by brain fitness studies.

Memory activities that engage all levels of brain operation—receiving, remembering and thinking—help to improve the function of the brain.

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Now, you may not have dancers to correct, but you may be required to give feedback on a presentation, or your friends may ask you what interesting things you saw at the museum. These are great opportunities to practically train your brain by flexing your memory muscles.

What is the simplest way to help yourself remember what you see? Repetition.

For example, say you just met someone new:

“Hi, my name is George”

Don’t just respond with, “Nice to meet you”. Instead, say, “Nice to meet you George.”

Got it? Good.

2. Do something different repeatedly

By actually doing something new over and over again, your brain wires new pathways that help you do this new thing better and faster.

Think back to when you were three years old. You surely were strong enough to hold a knife and a fork just fine. Yet, when you were eating all by yourself, you were creating a mess.

It was not a matter of strength, you see. It was a matter of cultivating more and better neural pathways that would help you eat by yourself just like an adult does.

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And guess what? With enough repetition you made that happen!

But how does this apply to your life right now?

Say you are a procrastinator. The more you don’t procrastinate, the more you teach your brain not to wait for the last minute to make things happen.

Now, you might be thinking “Duh, if only not procrastinating could be that easy!”

Well, it can be. By doing something really small, that you wouldn’t normally do, but is in the direction of getting that task done, you will start creating those new precious neural pathways.

So if you have been postponing organizing your desk, just take one paper and put in its right place. Or, you can go even smaller. Look at one piece of paper and decide where to put it: Trash? Right cabinet? Another room? Give it to someone?

You don’t actually need to clean up that paper; you only need to decide what you need to do with it.

That’s how small you can start. And yet, those neural pathways are still being built. Gradually, you will transform yourself from a procrastinator to an in-the-moment action taker.

3. Learn something new

It might sound obvious, but the more you use your brain, the better its going to perform for you.

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For example, learning a new instrument improves your skill of translating something you see (sheet music) to something you actually do (playing the instrument).

Learning a new language exposes your brain to a different way of thinking, a different way of expressing yourself.

You can even literally take it a step further, and learn how to dance. Studies indicate that learning to dance helps seniors avoid Alzheimer’s. Not bad, huh?

4. Follow a brain training program

The Internet world can help you improve your brain function while lazily sitting on your couch. A clinically proven program like BrainHQ can help you improve your memory, or think faster, by just following their brain training exercises.

5. Work your body

You knew this one was coming didn’t you? Yes indeed, exercise does not just work your body; it also improves the fitness of your brain.

Even briefly exercising for 20 minutes facilitates information processing and memory functions. But it’s not just that–exercise actually helps your brain create those new neural connections faster. You will learn faster, your alertness level will increase, and you get all that by moving your body.

Now, if you are not already a regular exerciser, and already feel guilty that you are not helping your brain by exercising more, try a brain training exercise program like Exercise Bliss.

Remember, just like we discussed in #2, by training your brain to do something new repeatedly, you are actually changing yourself permanently.

6. Spend time with your loved ones

If you want optimal cognitive abilities, then you’ve got to have meaningful relationships in your life.  Talking with others and engaging with your loved ones helps you think more clearly, and it can also lift your mood.

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If you are an extrovert, this holds even more weight for you. At a class at Stanford University, I learned that extroverts actually use talking to other people as a way to understand and process their own thoughts.

I remember that the teacher told us that after a personality test said she was an extrovert, she was surprised. She had always thought of herself as an introvert. But then, she realized how much talking to others helped her frame her own thoughts, so she accepted her new-found status as an extrovert.

7. Avoid crossword puzzles

Many of us, when we think of brain fitness, think of crossword puzzles. And it’s true–crossword puzzles do improve our fluency, yet studies show they are not enough by themselves.

Are they fun? Yes. Do they sharpen your brain? Not really.

Of course, if you are doing this for fun, then by all means go ahead. If you are doing it for brain fitness, then you might want to choose another activity

8. Eat right – and make sure dark chocolate is included

Foods like fish, fruits, and vegetables help your brain perform optimally. Yet, you might not know that dark chocolate gives your brain a good boost as well.

When you eat chocolate, your brain produces dopamine. And dopamine helps you learn faster and remember better. Not to mention, chocolate contains flavonols, antioxidants, which also improve your brain functions.

So next time you have something difficult to do, make sure you grab a bite or two of dark chocolate!

The bottom line

Now that you know how to train your brain, it’s actually time to start doing.

Don’t just consume this content and then go on with your life as if nothing has changed. Put this knowledge into action and become smarter than ever!

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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