We are what we think!
Or, to put it another way, what goes on in our head determines our approach to life, which determines what we achieve.
Have you ever found yourself sabotaging your own ideas before you start?
Do you fail to try something because you talk yourself out of doing it before you ever get going?
Is there something you would love to do, but just don’t think you could?
The good news is, YOU CAN.
Positive thinking is essential to self-confidence and overall health. According to the Mayo Clinic, positive thinking has been scientifically linked to longer lives, lower rates of depression, increased immunity and reduced risk of cardiovascular disease. We have been conditioned to think negatively, compare ourselves to others and get trapped in self-deprecating cycles of worry. It’s all around us, in the news, on your Facebook feed, even in your home.
So how do we make the shift to feeling more positive and confident?
Start small, with positive and intentional actions every day. The more we practice positive thoughts and behaviors, the more confident and self-assured we will feel.
Here are some habits to help you make the shift:
10 Positive Habits to Practice Daily
1. Make a Decision. Don’t consult with a friend about what to order at dinner or call your spouse when shopping for groceries. Make a decision based on what your gut is telling you. It will make you feel stronger and allows you to practice trusting your inner voice.
2. Try Something New. Confidence doesn’t come from perfection, it comes from effort. Take action.
3. Gently Exercise. Exercise is perhaps the most important treatment for anxiety, depression and insomnia. Just moving your body will break up negative thoughts and boost serotonin. Move your body every day, just be mindful of your energy and never overdo it. A seven minute workout or yoga in your living room will all work.
4. Clean Up Your News Feed. Social media that is full of triggers, images and updates can push you into a bad mood. Start following inspirational or “happy” accounts. HealthyPlace on Facebook. Happsters on Instagram and MindBodyGreen for healthy living tips are also good choices. The more positive images you view the better you will feel.
5. Think Back Over the Past Week and Write Down Every Good and Affirming Thing That Others Said to You. Review the complements or comments when you’re feeling insecure.
6. Make a Happy Playlist. Music can physiologically change your brain and body. It can make you breathe faster, increase your pulse and make you smile. Songs with a quick tempo and uplifting lyrics have been shown to be more effective in bringing out happy emotions, like ‘Happy’ by Pharrell or ‘Walking On Sunshine‘ by Katrina and the Waves. We all have our favourites: what are a few on your playlist?
7. Say No. Don’t say yes when you want to say no. You’re letting yourself down if you do favors you don’t want to do. Next time someone asks for something that will make you feel funky and you feel the urge to say “yes,” remind yourself they are asking, not ordering. You will respect yourself more later on.
8. Practice Posture. Hunching over at your desk can make you less confident and more insecure according to research from Ohio State University. Pull your belly button in towards your spine and pull your shoulders back when sitting or standing.
9. Give Yourself Credit for Small, Daily Accomplishments, even if you are not done. Did you work on cleaning up your cupboards but still have stacks of clothes to fold? Great, take a moment to focus on what you have done; don’t just wait until a project is finished.
10. Practice Gratitude. Write a thank you note, or call someone to say thanks for meeting with you for that lunch last week. People who are mindful of the positives in their life, create more positive energy. Comment on a post you like, email a friend, or even write down what you are grateful for in the moment (try to think of 5 new ones each time).
2 FREE BONUS TIPS:
10a. Decide to do it. If you say, “I can’t,” there is hope. Your intentions are giving you a chance. When you say, “I won’t,” you give yourself little or no chance of changing.
10b. Practice Forgiveness. Yes, forgiveness is one of the most powerful tools we have to release us from situations that inhibit us and hold us back. Sometimes hard: always essential.
Ask yourself daily, what small change can I make today that will take me one more step along the road to being more confident & feeling more fulfilled?
Take care until next time …