One of the greatest things that hold us back in life is our mind. Its so easy to get bogged down in everyday life and to see the negatives clearly while the positives sit there screaming in the darkness, completely overshadowed with what has gone wrong during the day.
Life isn’t easy, we all know that and we’re reminded of it every time we pick up a newspaper, switch on the TV or check our phones. I don’t think I’ve ever scrolled through my Facebook feed and seen a wall of complete positivity and happiness starring back at me.
My experience of Instagram is the complete opposite of course, where peoples lives seem to be so carefully constructed to show off the best parts of their life but I’m sure we’re all wise enough to know that real life doesn’t come with a filter.
The reality is that life is tough. We’ve all been and will go through struggles from one time to the next, we’ll all have challenges to face and goals to reach, days where we jump out of bed with a zest for life and ones where we want to crawl back under the covers but it is how we manage and tackle all of these days that shows our strength of character.
A positive mindset is so important in life. If you’re always looking for the bad things they’re going to stand out to you but if you’re looking for the good then they’ll shine brighter. That age old quote about every day not being good but there being good in every day is totally correct but only if you look for it.
I’m a big believer in creating the good in your life with positive thoughts and actions on a daily basis. Sure great things will come your way but if you’re actively creating that good as well then they’re adding to the positives in your life rather than being the only positives.
I’ve had some incredibly dark days in my life and I’ve learnt the importance of being thankful and taking joy from the little things. While its something that I’m definitely still working on in order to make it a lifelong habit, there are a number of things that I do on a daily basis to pull me into a positive mindset and keep me there. Negativity is a downward spiral and if ever I’m on that train of thought, the routine of these things in my days helps to pull me back to being positive and feeling successful.
While it’ll always be best for you to work out what positive things you can add to your daily lifestyle, I hope that mine might inspire you.
So without further ado, here are my top 5 positive things to do daily.
1. SCHEDULE ME TIME
Having time purely for yourself is so important and if you work a lot like I do, have a family or any other commitments then it can be so easy to dedicate time to everyone and everything else. The trouble is, you can’t look after other people effectively and efficiently if you don’t look after yourself first.
Take time out for yourself once a day. Schedule it in your calendar and stick to it. The time doesn’t have to be a great amount; you could block out ten minutes one day to lose yourself in a novel, half an hour the next to take a stroll outside or an afternoon to have a facial or it could even just be grabbing 5 minutes to put your feet up on the sofa once the kids have gone to bed.
It doesn’t have to cost you any money but what it will cost you is your time which is far more precious. Whatever point you’re at in your life and no matter how many people depend on you, you need to understand that you’re worth giving yourself the gift of your own time; and enjoy it!
2. PRACTICE MINDFULNESS & MEDITATION
Mindfulness is something that I got into as part of the latter stages of therapy following an accident where I was dealing with anxiety amongst other issues.
Mindfulness is all about being present in the moment. It takes some developing but you’re basically training your focus to be aware of the here and now while acknowledging and accepting how you feel, the thoughts you’re having and how your body is reacting. For me, it is often a way of enabling myself to let go.
A core practice of mindfulness is meditation and while it didn’t really work for me in a group therapy environment, one on one and at home alone enabled me to really see how beneficial it could be to my life.
Now I use the Calm app on my iPhone which has guided meditations as well as the rhythmic sounds and calming images without any guidance. Reaching a meditative state is such a positive experience as it really chills me out, makes me focus on the here and now and let go out negative energy and emotions. Even just five minutes a day can have a really positive impact.
Another thing that I like to do to relax and zone out from work is to colour in. I’d heard about adult colouring books a couple of years ago but I never got on board with the hype because I just didn’t see the point in colouring something in for it to sit in a book. However now I’m of the opinion that it is far from a waste of time.
Mindfully colouring in enables you to focus your mind on what you’re doing and gradually release the feelings that you have amassed throughout the day. Its a great way to wind down and switch off ready for bed.
3. BE ACTIVE
One of the biggest changes that I have made over the last couple of years is to be more active in my day to day life and I really cemented this into my lifestyle last year.
On a daily basis, I opt to park further away from the entrance, take the stairs as far as I can manage, go to the upstairs loo rather than the downstairs because its that little bit further away and walk to the shop rather than driving. I even dance about while brushing my teeth. I wear a Fitbit so it all adds to my calorie burn but its not really about that, its more about getting out into the outdoors if you’re able bodied to do so and not being lazy or reliant upon driving to the front door of every place you go.
I try to push myself to be more active and it really has a positive impact on my day and mindset; I feel so much better about myself, less sluggish and as though I have more energy. I love going to the gym and to fitness classes but I can’t go every single day as I have so much to do but I can make an effort to be more active in my day to day life which is achievable for me. Then I add in gym or PT sessions weekly and fitness classes that I enjoy doing to work on my fitness. I love going to Zumba right now but there’s so many things out there that I want to try from skiing lessons to Salsa dancing!
Wearing comfortable footwear makes a big difference to my ability to be more active day to day. One of the biggest fashion changes that I made in 2017 was to invest in some uber comfortable Adidas NMD’s. They’re lightweight, supportive and make me feel as though I’m sprightly on my feet. I can walk for miles in them and the fact that they’re so comfortable means that I’m encouraged to walk further in them, such as walking to my hotel from Kings Cross when I’m staying in London rather than getting an Uber like I used to.
My best advice is to stick to black trainers, then you can wear them with so many different outfits and if you need to wear business dress, you can always pop them on when you’re going to and from work and switch into their work shoes while they’re in the office. I’ve seen loads of people do it, especially in London where it enables them to be dressed smartly while being able to move quickly about the streets.
4. PRACTICE POSITIVE SELF TALK
I’m often asked how I came to be so self confident and body confident; let me tell you, it didn’t happen overnight but positive self talk really had a significant impact.
In a way, your mind and body listen to you. What you tell yourself and how you talk to your body has an impact on how you feel, how you present yourself and how you let others treat you.
On a daily basis, take some time out with your own thoughts to tell yourself what you love about you, being your and what you’re thankful for. It could be while you’re having your morning shower, over breakfast or on your commute to work but its important to get your mindset thinking positively.
I tend to find that those people who are so awful about others are the ones that are so unhappy with themselves and their own lives and they’re often horrible to and about themselves in private too.
5. SHARE THE LOVE
Spreading positivity is as important as creating a positive mindset of your own and it feels good too!
I try to genuinely compliment at least one person every day. Helping someone out or saying something nice can really make their day. You never know what someone else is going through so its important to be kind, always!
Even if so many things go wrong in my day, if I’m able to accomplish these things then I feel as though I’ve been successful and I’m able to think positively about myself and my achievements rather than feeling negative and punishing myself.
They might only seem small but these positive things can have a big impact!
SHOP THE POST
What positive things do you do daily?