I chuckled when I saw this quote on a coffee mug recently:
I don’t have an attitude problem. YOU have a problem with my attitude… and that’s not my problem.
What a joy it must be to live and work with this guy!
1. Laugh at yourself. That’s right, don’t take yourself so seriously. Life is full of embarrassing moments! You’re going to trip sooner or later. Your wrap around skirt may not always wrap around. Take a deep breath, enjoy the laugh and move on!
2. Talk back to yourself. Many negative people tend to say they can’t help their feelings. That’s true, but feelings are determined by thoughts, and we CAN choose what we think about. “What we think about, we tend to bring about.”
3. Give your time. Studies have shown that people who volunteer for a cause they feel passionate about tend to live longer, are less depressed and have enhanced feelings of well being.
4. Spiritual growth. Studies demonstrate a close link between spiritual growth and purpose and happiness. Seek to know Someone larger than you.
5. Break a sweat. Scientists have told us for a long time that exercise lifts the mood. But Princeton researchers discovered last spring that the beneficial effects of exercise are not just temporary. Cardio exercise actually rewires your mind to help keep your cool in stressful situations. And if you think you need to train for a triathlon to get the benefits, think again. Just 4 to 6 minutes every day for 5 weeks has been shown to reverse age-related memory impairment. It also helps with what they call “executive functioning”: being able to switch tasks efficiently, getting back on track more quickly after a distraction, making plans and following through. Wow. I need that! Excuse me while I take a quick walk.
6. OK, I’m back. And now, the easiest one of all: Smile! Researchers have discovered that participants who smiled while performing stressful tasks were able to complete them more efficiently and with less stress than those with neutral facial expressions. In other words, smiling speeds recovery from stress. Something about the smiling muscles increasing blood flow to the brain. Who cares what the reason is as long as it works? And the best part? You don’t have to wait until you feel overwhelming happiness to reap the benefits. Even faking a smile works. And the participants found that when they manufactured a smile, their happy feelings followed!
We are not victims of our moods. John Maxwell said, “The greatest day in your life and mine is when we take responsibility for our attitudes. That’s the day we truly grow up.”
Be a Superhero at home and the office by choosing positivity. And remember these words from Herm Albright: “A positive attitude may not solve all your problems, but it will annoy enough people to make it worth the effort.”
How do YOU nix the negativity and get your happy on? Leave a comment and I’ll send a copy of my new book, Falling UP, to three randomly selected commenters.