Many of us believe that being POSITIVE in attitude is just something you are born with.  The great news is that you can actually train yourself to be more positive. There is actually a physical change in your brain and in the chemicals that flow through your body when you are positive.

Research has shown that having positive thoughts:

  • stimulates the growth of nerve connections-Better Brain function
  • Increases longevity
  • Protects against chronic stress and anxiety
  • improves cognition by increasing mental productivity
  • improves your ability to analyze and think.
  • affects your view of surroundings.
  • increases attentiveness
  • leads to more happy thoughts-Increased Happiness
  • Inspires greater meaning in life
  • Fosters greater connection to others
  • Lowers inflammation
  • Increases immune function
  • Enhances weight control and blood sugar levels
  • Lowers blood pressure

Those are some pretty great benefits and they can be very simple to implement. But it takes practice! Our Practice Members at EOL who have these traits (even to a slight extent), excel at healing and reach their desired goals much more quickly.

Brain Factoid:

Positive thoughts activate the prefrontal cortex. This is the part of the brain that regulates emotion resulting in  an increased synapse connection. This has a trickle down effect on the entire stress response in the body. Priming your entire system to be more in the parasympathetic response mode promotes healing repair and growth. Rewire your brain for positivity and happiness, Psychology Today- Neuroscience of being positive

Now being positive generally means being positive or optimistic in attitude.  It doesn’t mean we never experience heartache, sadness or loss. And we need to acknowledge these feelings too. It is helpful to accept how you are feeling and then also acknowledging that this too will pass.  Everything is temporary and we can’t always control our circumstances. But in general we see the world thru a more positive lens, looking for silver linings during these moments of sadness. In essence we seek something to be grateful for even when things aren’t perfect.

Some ways in which we can cultivate the practice of positivity are easy and quick:

  • Fake it you make it. I love to choose a word of the day and embody it!  What does that mean. Actually feel it in your body what that emotion is like.  Note how you feel. Thru the day remind yourself with sticky notes of the word of the day.  Your body and brain will create new pathways so that it will be easier to conjure those feelings up daily. Positive Emotions List
  • Have a gratitude practice. I love writing it down each day and night.  The five minute journal has kept me on track with making it a daily ritual.  When I am grateful I feel it inside myself . Info about the Five Minute Journal
  • Mindfulness.  When we practice the art of meditation or mindfulness it is about being present in the here and now.  Even the gurus say that it is less then a second until you are in the moment. The art is teaching yourself to just come back to the present whenever you notice.  The research is astounding as to the effect of even a small 1 minute practice a day making a massive difference in your well-being.
  • Avoid Comparison.  Social media has significantly reduced our happiness.  We tend to focus on what others have or are doing. So protect your time from unnecessary and often unproductive distractions which take you away from creating your own moment to moment happiness.  Delete social media or only follow the people that make you feel good about yourself. Practice self compassion and don’t say anything to yourself you wouldn’t say to your best friend. What you think of yourself is your business and what others think of you is none of your business
  • Lighten up. laugh at yourself, be more playful and let your inner child come out.  As kids the simplest of experiences make a joyous impact. Buying more, having more or having more money doesn’t make you happier. It is the experiences you choose.  Focus on the things that create joy no matter how small.
  • Connect with others. Social connection thru groups, friends, and volunteering can amplify happiness.  Surround yourself with people who make you laugh, and who you feel connected to. And reduce interactions in situations that may be draining.

“Try and be the rain in someone else’s cloud”
Maya Angelou

  • Pay it forward. Practice 3 acts of kindness everyday.  Smile at the ticket collector. Pay for someone’s parking.  Hold the door and say have a great day. Write a handwritten note to someone you know could use a cheering up or that you just want to tell them you care or love them.  Doing good deeds fills our cup up exponentially to see the world as a beautiful positive place.
  • Give someone a hug.
  • Some more great resources:
    Dr. Josh Axe on Positivity
    22 Habits of Positive People
    How to train your brain for positive thinking

Being able to connect to yourself, and embody your experiences to add the richness and joy we all seek in life.  The time we take to know our inner world and how we tick and what we can take responsibility for, will significantly add to creating the vibrant healthy life we all desire.  To pass this wisdom on or even just remind you of something you already know is my mission in life.

You are loved and I only want Joy for you!

In love and health

Dr. Maureen

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