Supercharge Your Positivity: The Power of Gratitude

Supercharge Your Positivity: The Power of Gratitude

One of the easiest and most effective ways to make yourself a more positive and happier man is learning how to be grateful. Instead of obsessing over lack and want, next time focus on what you already have. It could be—and is as simple as—just being thankful for the little things. By learning to be grateful, rather than focusing on all the negativity whenever things are bad, you actually start looking for the bright side of things. That is a powerful tool to harness in helping you take the initiative to turn things around and to start getting what you really want.

We as humans seem to spend the majority of our time worrying and fretting about lack. We think about what we do not have rather than what we do have. We spend hours upon hours obsessing, whining, and complaining about the emptiness in our lives, much to our own chagrin and detriment. Even when we do have something, we still spend an inordinate amount of time thinking about how it could still be better!

Instead, challenge yourself during this time of wanton lack to instead be grateful. Think about what you do have rather than what you do not have. Doing this helps you to focus on positivity and stay away from negativity. Once you start down that deep, dark tunnel called negativity, it is very difficult to turn back around and find the light again. In negativity is blame. Negativity also causes a whole host of problems, ranging from stress, increased levels of the stress hormone cortisol, and can even trigger other physical manifestations of illnesses, like heartburn and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Scientists estimate that around 75% or more of our illnesses are induced by stress!

So, the next time you find yourself delving into the intricacies of wants and negativities…STOP! For a few minutes, take deep breaths and relax to stop that nasty vehicle called worry from taking you over the edge and into that deep, dark abyss. You may find it helpful to use some distraction therapy and say, “Omm” to yourself, focusing on the word itself. This helps to divert your attention away from the stressors of life. Now, look around and start finding things for which to be thankful. Here are some examples:

  • I am thankful for the yogurt, cereal, and fruit I had for breakfast.
  • I am thankful for the sandwich I had for lunch.
  • I am grateful for the space heater keeping my workspace warm.
  • I am grateful for a warm thermos of tea on a cold day.
  • I am grateful that I finally got over that nasty cold.
  • I am grateful for finding time to work out.
  • I am thankful for the delicious medley of chicken broth, celery, green peppers, that I used to cook my brown rice. It really imparted a savory flavor!
  • I am thankful for the much-needed rain.
  • I am grateful for hearing my favorite piece of music on the radio.

Avoid doing what I call even thoughs or buts. Going back to some of the above examples, this is what we want to avoid:

I am thankful for the sandwich I had for lunch, even though I have had the same thing for the past 3 months and I am getting bored of it.
I am thankful for the finding time to work out even though I could have better spent that time studying.

As you can see, adding the even thoughs just contradicts the whole sentence. Why did you even bother saying you were grateful?

All it takes is 30 seconds daily to stop and go over your list mentally. Find at least three to five things for which you are grateful. By making this a daily habit, over time you will find that whenever negativity sneaks up on you that you will actually look on the bright side of things. Looking for a job for the past 6 months but every place seems to be turning you down? Whereas in the past you might have launched into an angry tirade against the unseen forces that seem to conspire against you, this time you might actually hear yourself saying, “At least I still have a job while a significant part of the population is still unemployed for the past 6 months.” You might even be more proactive and ask yourself the question, “What am I doing wrong?”

By practicing gratitude, you are effectively rewiring your brain to think in positivity rather than the negativity that you have experienced for most of your life.

And that, my friends, is the Power of Gratitude.

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