How Positive Thinking Can Improve Your Health

I assume you want to be happier. Searching for greater happiness is a wonderful thing whatever level of happiness you are currently at. It could be that you are already enjoying life and just searching for a new idea, or it could be that you have felt negative towards life or the experiences life has dealt you. If you feel in anyway negative about life I would like to share something with you.

It is human nature to take a look at the darker side of life. I have often dwelt on this side. I’ve found that in this negative place I often feel a greater sense of hopelessness and loss. I believe when we have had a traumatic experience it is right that we should feel this way for a time. Perhaps it has been right for you to feel this way. Perhaps it was part of the healing process for whatever you have been through up until now. Perhaps looking at the negative side of life has served you well up until now – as a form of protection – but I think that in the long run that it would be wrong and harmful to your health, and life, for you continue with these thoughts once you have acknowledged that they exist. Let me expand on why I believe this.

Whatever life has dealt you, however bad things were or are; there has been a lesson for you to learn from that experience. If you are still in a situation that makes you unhappy it would be wise to review it and see what you can do to leave it or alleviate the pain and frustration from it. In the ending of an unhappy experience you are released and presented with something that can be used to make everyday from here onwards happier… and that something can be summed up in one word…

Out of your hardship, out of your hopelessness and feeling of being lost you will find ‘opportunity’, opportunity to be free of all the hardship of the past, an opportunity to rediscover yourself, an opportunity to do all the things you might like to have done but could not or did not do before. Let me give you an example of the day a thought about an opportunity came.

The thought came as a shock, so out of place with the rest of my thoughts that day that I stopped what I was doing instantly. A few seconds passed and then I began to laugh like I hadn’t laughed in years.

I had been upset. I had been dwelling on the down side of my relationship break-up. In particular I had been regretting so many wasted years. I was feeling just awful when the thought I am telling you about travelled through my brain like an express train. The thought was this:

“I am a lucky man, in an enviable position and I’m a free to create the most incredible relationship with the most
incredible woman I’ve ever met.”

Until that moment I had no idea that the break-up of my relationship had a positive side, but that realisation made me laugh. That realisation reshaped my day. In fact it did a lot more than that…

Over the next few days I still had plenty of moments when I thought about all the things that hurt me. The good thing was though that the “I’m a lucky man…’ thoughts kept returning. I realise now that what I had begun to do was let go of my attachment to my past relationship.

I begun to spend time sitting down with my eyes shut and repeating the thoughts that I was now free to create the most incredible relationship. As I did this it was like cords breaking. The heartache and pain subsided gradually over the following days and I began to feel somehow lighter, like a little of my pain had been lifted off.

Within four months that incredible relationship began to unfold. First I met this wonderful woman. We became close friends and from there the magic has just continued to unfold.

Try this:

For a moment close your eyes. Think about one thing that is causing you heart-ache. Now, be playful and imagine that this pain is in fact a great opportunity. Smile as you think about the opportunity that is now available to you right now. It may be a relationship. It may be a change of job. Whatever it is, just remember that as one door closes another opens!

Our perception and response to our environment and community plays influences our mindset, behavior, and perception about other people and the world we live in. We can be pessimistic, allowing gloom and negativity to haunt our every waking hour; or we can choose to be optimistic and see our stress and anxiety as normal human reaction to life’s challenges. But there is more to human response to stress and anxiety than just having a “bad day.” Our disposition not only affects our behavior but the state of our health, as well.

Extensive research has shown that people who are are suffering from depression and anxiety are at greater risk of having heart disease and other illnesses. Further studies also proved that people who are under extreme prolonged stress are more susceptible to infections like the flu and the viral cold.

In recent years, researches have reinforced the theory that the human mind plays a major role in influencing the way that our body works. Attitudes and emotions directly impact health and well-being. Being too negative in terms of one’s thoughts or emotions somehow weaken an individual’s immune system, which also confirms the mind-and-body link of health and well-being. The same study showed that people who are more optimistic have a 50% lower risk of untimely death than those who are pessimistic. Aside from a lower risk of premature death, having a positive attitude increases a person’s energy and ability to handle life’s difficulties. Having a positive attitude helps us deal with emotional pain and helps us attain peace, calm, and joy.

Although we cannot will ourselves to feel positive all the time, a number of techniques can be learned to help us reduce the impact of stress and anxiety. Using relaxation techniques based on Western, Eastern, and other traditional forms of meditation can help us reclaim a positive outlook. These techniques not only alleviate but also prevent psychological problems such as depression, anxiety attacks, aggression, and other stress-related illnesses like chronic pain, tension headaches,and hypertension.

The following are some of the useful methods that promote peace and relaxation:

Visual Imagery – It involves visualizing oneself in the midst of a soothing and peaceful scene— a forest, a beach, a stream, a lake, or being in the mountains. The important thing is that you visualize a scene that is beautiful and calm. Aside from picturing nature scenes in your head, you could also try recalling a special, happy moment in your life. The practice of visualization slows down the heart rate and breathing patterns.

Meditation – This requires concentration or focusing one’s thoughts. It is a often referred to as the act of “emptying one’s thoughts of all negative thoughts and emotions.” Meditation helps cultivate calmness and promotes the development of new and fresh insights into a problem and about life itself.

Exercise – A good relaxation therapy that is mixed with physical exercise is called isometric squeeze technique. This technique is used as part of a systematic desensitization therapy for people who suffer from anxiety and panic disorders. The technique entails the application of alternate tension and relaxation on the body’s 16 different muscle groups.

There are other practical steps towards building a more positive life. These steps include the following:

  1. Reduce Stress
  2. Get Plenty of Rest
  3. Get Organized
  4. Exercise
  5. Eat Well

By cultivating a more positive attitude and frame of mind, we can overcome life’s many challenges. Having a calm disposition entails the development of a coping mechanism that enables as to face life’s many obstacles and occasional heartaches. Through the application of stress management techniques and a commitment to overcome one’s personal problems,
life can be more meaningful, worthwhile, and of course, happy as happy can be.

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