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The rules of positive thinking

The words ‘positive thinking’ have been extensively used throughout the self-help industry, especially over the past few years.  Making judgements based on the glass being ‘half full’ rather than ‘half empty’ is something we are all familiar with.  It is only now through the recent findings in the field of neuroscience, that the importance of seeking out the positive actually has an impact in the plasticity of our brain and how we view our life.  Our brain in naturally wired to seek out the negatives as part of our survival mechanism.  Yet we can retrain our brain to seek out the positives instead.  Finding the positives leads to reduced stress, greater well-being and overall general happiness.  As Henri Matisse said, ‘There are always flowers for those who want to see them.’

So if you want to invest in some healthy positive thinking, try implementing at least one of these Rules of Positive Thinking and watch the magic unravel in your life:

1) Cultivate an Attitude of Gratitude.  Think of all the people and things that make you happy, that bring true happiness and joy to your life.  Acknowledge them on a daily basis.  By doing so you focus on what you HAVE rather than what you DON’T HAVE.  Thus attracting more of it into your life. 

2) Remember to keep your Focus exactly on your positive intention.  Start every project or conversation with a clear vision of what you wish to achieve.  Keep your eye on the result you wish for and focus on the solutions not the problems or dramas.

3) Practice the Power of Now, give your full attention to what you are doing in the present moment, let go of focusing on the past or future and make the most of now.  We create our future and past by how we live in the present. 

4) Fill your life with your Signature Strengths.  Dr Martin Seligman, author of Authentic Happiness,  believes that the ‘good life’ or abundant gratification and authentic happiness are possible when living in accordance with your signature strengths.  Discover yours at www.authentichappiness.org

5) Train your brain to think: refuse to allow rogue worries or negative thoughts to roam around your mind unchecked.  You haven’t got the luxury of flabby thoughts.  Your life is far, far too important to allow a lazy, out of control mindset sabotage you!

6) Train yourself to think like a dynamic, decisive, successful person, mentally fit, emotionally robust, intellectually brilliant.  Get yourself a name for being SHARP, DECISIVE, CREATIVE and down-right BRILLIANT.

7) Meditate to quieten your mind. Practise meditation to still the mind and quiet the incessant chatter. Meditation practice can take many forms, find your personal preference and commit to five or more minutes a day to gain a centred, positive and balanced state of mind.  Try this for a start.  

8) Watch your language!  Your language shapes your thoughts…..your thoughts dictate your behaviour …. your behaviour produces your result!  Be vigilant with your words and only use language that supports your brain in seeking solutions.  Banish "can’t, but, should" to name a few culprits that keep us trapped in problems.

9) Practice the art of Positive Affirmations.  We are experts at programming our minds with negative affirmations without even knowing it.  Take the time to reprogram your mind with positive affirmations by repeating them over and over until they become second nature.  Your hard work will pay off as you bask in the results of your positive mindset. 

10) Sometimes bad things happen such as accidents or illnesses.  When this happens we naturally dwell on the sudden bad news and this amplifies the bad situation and keeps you locked in it for longer. One way to activate our positive thinking is to acknowledge the emotion behind the event and also Seek out the Positive in the form of a challenge.  Thoughts that would otherwise be obsessed with the negative event can now be redirected and focused on something positive.  In time you will develop important character traits such as optimism and environmental mastery, which isthe ability to handle yourself positively and confidently in difficult situations.

© Claire Hall & Authentic Empowerment.