Are you a pessimist who tends to look at the downside of life? Do you often hear negative self-talk in your head? Or maybe you have accomplished something noteworthy at work, but instead of celebrating, you allow your mood to be deflated by finding a frustrating detail.
Sometimes your negative attitude about life can become dark, like a bottomless pit that you can barely pull yourself out of. These ingrained habits may affect your mental health.
You may be thinking, “I know that positive thinking is good, but I can’t change the fact that I am a pessimist.” Indeed, there is no good or bad personality, and you can’t always change who you are. However, positive thinking can be a highly beneficial tool to keep in your recovery toolkit for mental health.
A negative outlook has the power to pull you down forcefully, like gravity. On the other hand, hope is like the uplifting air balloon you need to resurface to emotional stability. Cultivating better coping skills when your mind is flooded with downward-pulling negative thinking can help you find hope in recovery.
Recovery Begins With a New Outlook on Life
What is a hopeful outlook on life? It is holding onto a foundational belief that whatever happens is best for this moment. Whether you believe in a higher power or not, the universe is not inherently a tragic place to be. It promises so much beauty and mystery.
Life is a good gift which we should not take for granted. This kind of hopeful outlook on life is more about resilience than merely having an optimistic personality. It is resilience that characterizes the inspirational people around us.
Having a new and hopeful outlook on life also means transforming perspectives from a me-centered one to an externally engaged one. You are not the center of the universe, and what a big relief that is!
You cannot get rid of the negative self-talk because you have placed yourself as the center of the world. You become too attached to your own misery. A new outlook on life requires you to look around and have empathy for others’ hardships. You might be surprised and even inspired by real-life examples of human resilience around you.
The Power of Optimism
A profound and authentic kind of optimism is about not giving up the fight in life. In this sense, resilience-centered optimism can be trained and achieved. Psychologists define resilience as the process of adaptation during adversity, loss, trauma, and significant stress. This is particularly important for people who have suffered through addiction and are seeking recovery.
Apart from resilience, creativity and curiosity can also help boost positive thinking in your life. These two behavioral traits are based on attentiveness, a mindfulness exercise you can practice in daily life. Along these lines, art therapy and music therapy can be beneficial.
Additionally, if you are a parent, it is imperative to be aware of the impact of your positive or negative thinking on your children. A positive thinking family environment is beneficial to all members. Amid the pandemic, when there are many stressful factors around us, it is more important than ever to stay positive and spread that positive energy in your social circles.
Thinking Positively: Do’s and Don’ts
Are there actionable exercises when it comes to positive thinking drills? You can try the following and build them into your daily routine:
- Practice self-affirmative meditation or mindful exercises in the morning
- Embrace the beginning of every day as a new beginning
- Journal things you are thankful for every day
- Cultivate the fun-loving you by engaging in pleasurable activities
- Use a good laugh whenever possible
- Be more intentional in looking for the silver linings even in challenging circumstances
- Befriend people who are positive thinkers
- Be open to opportunities for self-discovery
Meanwhile, you need to flag out the negative thinking habits that tend to occupy your mind like a weed. These include the following don’ts:
- Don’t magnify the negative aspects of a situation and filter out all the positive parts. Instead, identify areas of growth and change and stay thankful for them.
- Don’t over-blame yourself when things do not go as you wish. Instead, accept the outcome and rationally evaluate the causes of failure.
- Don’t always anticipate the worst of things in the future. Instead, acknowledge that life is good and beautiful in a profound way, as manifested by plenty of evidence in nature alone.
- Don’t fall into an either-or, black-or-white false dichotomy. Instead, nurture a more sophisticated view about the complexity of life, and choose to live in awe of its mystery.
Seek Professional Help
Building a hopeful outlook on life and resilience-centered optimism can also mean getting help from mental health professionals. Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) may help you identify the patterns of your mental activities. Sometimes you simply need an external push to keep going.
You might also benefit from a range of helpful social interactions. True optimism can be socially transmissible. It is about building a positive filter or emotional support system around you. You can grow much better in resilience and optimism when journeying with a supportive group.
Has negative self-talk become a top concern for your mental well-being? Have you been constantly fighting it but without progress? Do you want to learn how to practice positive thinking? Schedule an appointment with a licensed mental healthcare professional at Laguna Shores Recovery. Laguna Shores offers a wide range of treatments at our full medical and residential facility, including mental health diagnosis, cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), dialectical behavior therapy (DBT), experiential therapy, 12-Step support groups, and medical treatment plans. Our evidence-based treatments help clients with actionable strategies to build up positive mental health. Our conventional and alternative approaches to care ensure that your individual needs are always met. Remember, your recovery needs should always come first. Therefore if you need help, reach out today. To find out more, call us at Laguna Shores today at (866) 906-3203, and our experienced staff can help you grow into a resilient and hopeful new outlook on life.