A positive attitude towards life goes hand in hand with your happiness and overall well-being. Ample research has shown that thinking positively can also help with stress management and improve our health.
Negative thinking is a non-starter, especially for entrepreneurs. “It is not a surprise that all negative thinking is fear-based, but did you know that chronic negative thinking that goes on day-after-day creates stress that can damage the body and mind, resulting in disease or worse?”
Of course if you have a strong tendency to think negatively and worry, changing your mindset won’t happen overnight. Andrew Torba, CEO of Advertise.ai, suggests: “The point is: the way you feel about your life [and business] is driven by your mindset. This skill of consciously altering your thought process takes time to master, if you ever truly master it at all.”
Making improvements in your daily thought process and attitude will take practice, dedication and a willingness to adapt.
If you’re determined to blast away those negative thoughts and replace them with a much more positive and optimistic outlook, take a look at the following techniques:
Regular exercise comes with a myriad of benefits including mental health and physical improvements.
Research reveals that the emotional benefits exercising includes a boost in self-confidence and focus. It also keeps you sharp and on your toes. “Working out, especially between age 25 and 45, boosts the chemicals in the brain that support and prevent degeneration of the hippocampus, an important part of the brain for memory and learning.”
Exercise can also help break the vicious cycle of negativity and is regarded as one of the most effective ways to nurture a positive mindset. When we exercise, endorphins are released and they interact with the receptors in your brain; triggering a positive feeling in the body. Alan Hirsch, MD, neurological director of the Smell and Taste Treatment and Research Foundation explains that these natural feel good “neurotransmitters produced in the brain work to reduce pain and suffering.”
Practice daily mindfulness
Mindfulness is increasingly becoming a popular method used to reduce stress and boost positivity. This simple form of meditation involves focusing on breathing, enabling you to observe your thoughts and focus the mind whilst reducing brain chatter.
By enabling us to stay in the present moment, mindfulness can help create long-term mindset changes such as: increased positivity, work productivity and happiness.
“Scientific studies have shown that mindfulness not only prevent[s] depression, but it also positively affects the brain patterns underlying day-to-day anxiety, stress, depression and irritability so that when they arise, they dissolve away more easily.”
Mindfulness is about enjoying the moment and being present, rather than worrying about what’s gone on before and what lies ahead. This simple meditation technique is a powerful way to adopt a more positive mindset as you tackle the daily mental challenges that arise with building a successful business.
Know your strengths
We’ve all got strengths, just like we’ve all got weaknesses. Whether it’s being good at marketing, being creative when it comes to product development, or having a caring and authentic personality; strengths are beneficial to you and those around you.
Plenty of research acknowledges the benefits of both knowing and using your strengths, including improved productivity, goal attainment, reduced anxiety and more. An article by The University of Kent suggests, “The theory behind strengths is based on positive psychology: everyone has strengths they are born with but few people know what these are. By identifying your strengths and matching yourself to the role, you will enjoy it more and perform better that those who have to try hard to fill the role.”
Contrary to popular belief, it’s not that high achievers have more strengths than the average person. Instead, “High achievers spend most of their time using their strengths. They focus on developing strengths and managing weaknesses.” In essence, they know how to better utilize and apply them.
Engage in positive activities
Engaging in positive activities is directly associated with cultivating a positive attitude. Find simple ways to do this like: expressing gratitude, paying someone a compliment, practicing random acts of kindness, go for a walk, connect with likeminded peers over coffee, blow bubbles, etc. (Yes! Bubbles. Funny enough, “The act of blowing bubbles forces people to stop what they are doing and focus on their breathing, which can help lower anxiety levels …”)
With a little dedication, motivation and effort we can all adopt a more positive mindset. By thinking more positively, you are likely to be able to cope with stressful situations more easily and boost personal happiness which has an undeniable impact on the success of your business.
This article has been edited and condensed.
Hadyn Luke is a Contract Manager at UK-based CMSFitness, a specialist in health and fitness training. Based in Huddersfield, CMSFitness offer a diverse range of high-quality personal training and fitness courses in the West Yorkshire region. CMSFitness is recognised as a premium provider of health and fitness courses that offer a variety of commercial and government-funded training programmes for people of varying ages and backgrounds across Yorkshire. Connect with @CMSFitness on Twitter.