Negative situations happen all the time. We can’t avoid them, so how can we counteract their negative effect on our lives and our attitudes?
Learning the power of positive thinking helps us stay positive even in the midst of tragedy. Learning how to stay positive in negative situations is invaluable in leading a healthy lifestyle. Here are 7 ways you can achieve this:
1. Have a Positive Support Group
It’s important to have a positive support group that will help each member through difficult times.
Notice that I said a “positive” support group. Surrounding yourself with positive people will help you stay positive when in a negative situation.
There are plenty of negative people out there—avoid them! Their negative attitudes will only bring you down and be counterproductive to what you are trying to achieve by practicing positive thinking.
Learn more about the power of people around you: The Hidden Power of Every Single Person Around You.
2. Express What You Are Grateful For
Even in the worst of times, most of us realize that we still have things in our lives for which we are grateful. Voice those blessings!
Practice gratitude (here’s how.) Talk about the things you are grateful for with your closest friends, your support group. Keep a gratitude journal to capture the thankfulness you feel for what you have on a daily basis.
Actively acknowledging what you’re grateful for will help you to always have a grateful mind and heart, even when bad things happen.
3. Retrain Your Mind
Are you a person who continually beats yourself up mentally? Do you constantly question your actions?
Believe me, I’ve been there. Nobody needs to call me stupid, because I can do that just fine myself!
Retrain your brain to stop doing that to yourself. The more you talk negatively to yourself, the more that negativity will become a part of you.
Instead, practice the power of positive thinking. Any time a negative thought comes into your mind, replace it with a positive one. At some point, this will become more natural as your brain automatically turns a negative into a positive.
Although it might not feel like it at the time, most negative situations contain a learning experience. If we’re going through the discomfort and pain of dealing with a negative situation, we might as well take the opportunity to learn something from it too.
Shifting your mindset and looking for the lesson in the situation isn’t about blaming yourself or anyone else for what’s happened. Instead, the purpose of doing this is to get something positive out of the situation and, hopefully, to prevent it from occurring again in the future.
4. Exercise Your Body And Mind
We know that exercise is good for our bodies, but what about our minds?
Sure, it is! It releases those natural endorphins in our brains that make us feel better.
Exercise has physical as well as mental and emotional benefits. Getting out there and moving around will keep your body in better shape, as well as boosting your self-esteem for having the discipline to exercise.
You might try adding yoga into your exercise routine now and then to help you learn to really focus and meditate. Exercise is an excellent way to fight the negative effects of bad situations.
5. Accept and Find Solutions
Many of us are resistant to changes in our lives. What we must do is learn to accept that change will happen.
Haven’t you heard that “the only constant in life is change”? There is a lot of truth to that, as we continually go through changes, whether good or bad. Accepting that changes are a part of life can help us to relax and be more accepting. Try to look for the positive aspect.
For example, if you’re in a bad job situation, what do you do? Accept it and try to make it better? Possibly. Or maybe this is the chance to make a change for yourself and look for that job you really want.
We can’t always control the situation that we find ourselves in, and we can’t please everyone. What we can do when we find ourselves in a negative situation is to take ownership of our actions and make amends for our mistakes.
If you find yourself in a negative situation, trying to take responsibility for things you have no control over will only make you feel worse. It’s also self-defeating as, if you don’t have control over something then there’s usually not much you can do to change it.
For example, if you’re catching a flight to an important event and the flight is delayed, there’s not much point in worrying about whether it’s going to be delayed further or cancelled, as you don’t have any control over that outcome. What you can do is let any contacts you have at your destination know about the situation or even try to book a different flight to make sure you get there as soon as possible.
6. Practice Self-Compassion
Every negative situation is a chance to practice a valuable skill: self-compassion. The amount of self-compassion we show ourselves is directly proportionate to our quality of life. If we’re able to practice self-compassion, we’re more likely to be resilient in the face of challenging situations and we’re more likely to take risks that further our personal and professional development. We’re also more likely to take steps to amend any role that we played in creating the negative situation in the first place.
Self-compassion is not the same as giving yourself a free ride or not taking responsibility for your actions. Instead, it’s about accepting that you are a human being with human experiences.
7. Remember It Will Pass
Life is a process of highs, lows, and everything in between. Just as this means that negative situations are an inevitability, it also means that they will inevitably pass and make way for more positive times.
Our job is to take what we can from the negative situations, whether it’s a lesson well learned, or a renewed trust in our strength and resilience, and to enjoy the good times while they last.
Negative situations are uncomfortable, even painful at times. But how we approach these situations has a huge influence over how we experience them.
More tragic changes, such as death, will throw us off even worse. But when our brains are practiced on how to stay positive in negative situations, even tragedy won’t destroy us.
With the power of positive thinking, we can learn to put negative situations in perspective and to deal with them as they arise.
Featured photo credit: Court Cook via unsplash.com