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6 Practical Ways To Radiate Positivity In Your Daily Life

6 Practical Ways To Radiate Positivity In Your Daily Life

Have you ever noticed how some people seem to have a smile and a positive outlook even when they are going through difficult times while others can only see the gray cloud no matter how many things are going right? It’s all about mindset. There are some people who seem to be born looking on the bright side and others born to worry. The question then becomes: do we have any control over our outlook or are we just born with a gut reaction of seeing the glass half full or half empty?

I believe anyone can train themselves to be more positive if they want to. Here are six practical ways to radiate positivity in your daily life.

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1. Choose to be happy.

Making a choice affects the filter through which we see the events of our day. If we wake up cranky and decide it’s going to be a bad day, we see annoyances and bad things around every turn. If you instead choose to be happy, your brain will look for proof that you are, indeed happy. I will often say it out loud, “Today I choose to be happy.” Verbalizing and thinking about making the choice to be happy sends a double message to your brain: I’m happy, now prove it!

2. Make a game of gratitude.

Instead of taking things for granted, look for all the things in your life to be grateful for. When we have an attitude of gratitude, that gratitude will multiply. Make a game of it and take note of all the things, big or small, that you are grateful for. You might wake up and be grateful for a good night’s sleep or a comfortable bed. Maybe you are grateful for the person sleeping beside you. I’m grateful for indoor plumbing, soft towels and my favorite toothpaste – and that’s all before I get to the kitchen to start the coffee and make my breakfast!

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Having a gratitude mindset is even more powerful when things get tricky during your day. When you are struggling with technology or having issues with a co-worker, look for something, anything, to be grateful for. One day when my internet kept going down I was grateful for my iPhone so I could still check my email while dealing the technology issues.

3. SMILE!

I remember my fifth grade teacher telling us that “it takes fewer muscles to smile than to frown”.  It  was her way of reminding the class to be happy and have positive attitudes. It turns out smiling, even when we don’t really want to, is good for us too! Research from the University of Kansas shows that smiling can help our brains and bodies recover from stress more quickly – even if the smile is a conscious choice and not a natural reaction to being happy.

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4. Seek out the silver lining.

Every storm cloud has a silver lining if you just look for it. People with a positive mindset find the lesson or the up-side to whatever is going on in life. Focusing on the positive helps them recover from adversity faster.

5. Know what you can and can’t control.

Positive minded people know what they do and don’t have control over. If they can influence a situation to make it better, they will. If they don’t have any control, they control their reaction. Instead of dwelling on the negative aspects, people with a positive mindset learn to release their attachment and move on, focusing on the positive things that are happening in life.

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6. Prioritize your happiness.

Make being happy a priority. When happiness is a priority it affects the choices you make about how you spend your time and who you spend it with. You will likely choose to surround yourself with other positive minded people which will in turn support your own positive mindsets.

You get to choose how you show up in the world and how you feel. What you focus on and your mindsets will affect your daily life. Choose to be happy – it makes life more fun!

Featured photo credit: Kevin Dinkel via flickr.com

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Tara Reed

Tara is the founder of Pivot To Happy, a site with resources for families dealing with a dementia or Alzheimer's diagnosis.

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Last Updated on February 11, 2021

Easily Misunderstood by Others? 6 Barriers You Should Overcome to Make Communication Less Frustrating

Easily Misunderstood by Others? 6 Barriers You Should Overcome to Make Communication Less Frustrating

How often have you said something simple, only to have the person who you said this to misunderstand it or twist the meaning completely around? Nodding your head in affirmative? Then this means that you are being unclear in your communication.

Communication should be simple, right? It’s all about two people or more talking and explaining something to the other. The problem lies in the talking itself, somehow we end up being unclear, and our words, attitude or even the way of talking becomes a barrier in communication, most of the times unknowingly. We give you six common barriers to communication, and how to get past them; for you to actually say what you mean, and or the other person to understand it as well…

The 6 Walls You Need to Break Down to Make Communication Effective

Think about it this way, a simple phrase like “what do you mean” can be said in many different ways and each different way would end up “communicating” something else entirely. Scream it at the other person, and the perception would be anger. Whisper this is someone’s ear and others may take it as if you were plotting something. Say it in another language, and no one gets what you mean at all, if they don’t speak it… This is what we mean when we say that talking or saying something that’s clear in your head, many not mean that you have successfully communicated it across to your intended audience – thus what you say and how, where and why you said it – at times become barriers to communication.[1]

Perceptual Barrier

The moment you say something in a confrontational, sarcastic, angry or emotional tone, you have set up perceptual barriers to communication. The other person or people to whom you are trying to communicate your point get the message that you are disinterested in what you are saying and sort of turn a deaf ear. In effect, you are yelling your point across to person who might as well be deaf![2]

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The problem: When you have a tone that’s not particularly positive, a body language that denotes your own disinterest in the situation and let your own stereotypes and misgivings enter the conversation via the way you talk and gesture, the other person perceives what you saying an entirely different manner than say if you said the same while smiling and catching their gaze.

The solution: Start the conversation on a positive note, and don’t let what you think color your tone, gestures of body language. Maintain eye contact with your audience, and smile openly and wholeheartedly…

Attitudinal Barrier

Some people, if you would excuse the language, are simply badass and in general are unable to form relationships or even a common point of communication with others, due to their habit of thinking to highly or too lowly of them. They basically have an attitude problem – since they hold themselves in high esteem, they are unable to form genuine lines of communication with anyone. The same is true if they think too little of themselves as well.[3]

The problem: If anyone at work, or even in your family, tends to roam around with a superior air – anything they say is likely to be taken by you and the others with a pinch, or even a bag of salt. Simply because whenever they talk, the first thing to come out of it is their condescending attitude. And in case there’s someone with an inferiority complex, their incessant self-pity forms barriers to communication.

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The solution: Use simple words and an encouraging smile to communicate effectively – and stick to constructive criticism, and not criticism because you are a perfectionist. If you see someone doing a good job, let them know, and disregard the thought that you could have done it better. It’s their job so measure them by industry standards and not your own.

Language Barrier

This is perhaps the commonest and the most inadvertent of barriers to communication. Using big words, too much of technical jargon or even using just the wrong language at the incorrect or inopportune time can lead to a loss or misinterpretation of communication. It may have sounded right in your head and to your ears as well, but if sounded gobbledygook to the others, the purpose is lost.

The problem: Say you are trying to explain a process to the newbies and end up using every technical word and industry jargon that you knew – your communication has failed if the newbie understood zilch. You have to, without sounding patronizing, explain things to someone in the simplest language they understand instead of the most complex that you do.

The solution: Simplify things for the other person to understand you, and understand it well. Think about it this way: if you are trying to explain something scientific to a child, you tone it down to their thinking capacity, without “dumbing” anything down in the process.[4]

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Emotional Barrier

Sometimes, we hesitate in opening our mouths, for fear of putting our foot in it! Other times, our emotional state is so fragile that we keep it and our lips zipped tightly together lest we explode. This is the time that our emotions become barriers to communication.[5]

The problem: Say you had a fight at home and are on a slow boil, muttering, in your head, about the injustice of it all. At this time, you have to give someone a dressing down over their work performance. You are likely to transfer at least part of your angst to the conversation then, and talk about unfairness in general, leaving the other person stymied about what you actually meant!

The solution: Remove your emotions and feelings to a personal space, and talk to the other person as you normally would. Treat any phobias or fears that you have and nip them in the bud so that they don’t become a problem. And remember, no one is perfect.

Cultural Barrier

Sometimes, being in an ever-shrinking world means that inadvertently, rules can make cultures clash and cultural clashes can turn into barriers to communication. The idea is to make your point across without hurting anyone’s cultural or religious sentiments.

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The problem: There are so many ways culture clashes can happen during communication and with cultural clashes; it’s not always about ethnicity. A non-smoker may have problems with smokers taking breaks; an older boss may have issues with younger staff using the Internet too much.

The solution: Communicate only what is necessary to get the point across – and eave your personal sentiments or feelings out of it. Try to be accommodative of the other’s viewpoint, and in case you still need to work it out, do it one to one, to avoid making a spectacle of the other person’s beliefs.[6]

Gender Barrier

Finally, it’s about Men from Mars and Women from Venus. Sometimes, men don’t understand women and women don’t get men – and this gender gap throws barriers in communication. Women tend to take conflict to their graves, literally, while men can move on instantly. Women rely on intuition, men on logic – so inherently, gender becomes a big block in successful communication.[7]

The problem: A male boss may inadvertently rub his female subordinates the wrong way with anti-feminism innuendoes, or even have problems with women taking too many family leaves. Similarly, women sometimes let their emotions get the better of them, something a male audience can’t relate to.

The solution: Talk to people like people – don’t think or classify them into genders and then talk accordingly. Don’t make comments or innuendos that are gender biased – you don’t have to come across as an MCP or as a bra-burning feminist either. Keep gender out of it.

And remember, the key to successful communication is simply being open, making eye contact and smiling intermittently. The battle is usually half won when you say what you mean in simple, straightforward words and keep your emotions out of it.

Reference

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