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Think Like an Optimist

Positive thoughts, positive life. It is not as far-fetched as it sounds that your mind can manifest what you believe. Science shows that if you tend to think more positively your life takes on a more positive tone including your physical health.

By thinking positively, you can affect aspects of your physical well-being such as your immune system, blood pressure, resilience (recovery) and pain tolerance.

With regards to the immune system, psychological studies have shown those with the ability to stay positive tend to get over colds and common flus much quicker than those who carry a more negative disposition. Positive thinkers also have less symptoms (runny noses, coughs, chills, etc.) than their negative counterparts.

When you think positively your life is usually much less stressful. Less stress, aside from making you feel better in general often equates to lower instances of blood pressure and other heart-related diseases. In fact, many studies show that not only does positive thinking lower the effects of heart problems, it can eliminate them all together.

Along the same lines as with the immune system, positive thoughts can speed up the healing process and help with your pain tolerance levels as well. It all has to do with having better coping skills which allow you to navigate the ups and downs of a recovery (think surgery, broken bones, or even overdoing it at the gym) much better than someone that always thinks negatively.

Not only does positive thinking have a positive effect on your physical health, but your social health as well. Having the perception of being a positive person can pay dividends in how you are treated in social circles. Some of the benefits that come with a positive persona include having your opinions and decisions valued at a higher rate at work, better, more meaningful relationships both personally and professionally, and an increased sense of self-esteem. Overall having a sunny disposition helps you enjoy life more by finding joy no matter who or where you are.

Want to start improving your overall positivity to reap these incredible health benefits? Below we provide you with a few tips on how to get started.

  • This may seem like a no-brainer but start your day with positive affirmations and focus on the good aspects of your life. Spending just a few minutes in the morning telling yourself “it’s going to be a good day” can work wonders for how the rest of your day goes. By extension, try to find the positive aspects of not so great situations as they arise throughout your day. For instance, if you leave your cell phone at home instead of berating yourself for being careless, take it as a chance to take a break from your dependency on it and enjoy your surroundings.

  • Staying focused on the present and not revisiting past “failures” is another way to maintain a much healthier and more positive outlook. Most sources of our negativity stem from past events that did not go well or events in the future we anticipate not being positive. In most cases you will find what your mind has built something up to be is not really that bad. By the same token make a habit of viewing “failures” as “lessons” instead. By doing this you are not focusing on what did not go well, but instead on what you will do differently the next time.

  • Lastly, you are the company you keep. If you want to have a more positive outlook, surround yourself with more positive people. When surrounded by positivity you are going to hear it more often and see it more often which in turn will help you think and feel that way too.

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