This post is by Lou Macabasco–Yanuaria of Lifetofullest.com.
The ability to keep a positive attitude in our day-to day-activities and interactions is a skill that only few people possess. For most of us, it is easier to fill our minds with negative thoughts and ungratefulness. We complain and feel miserable in a lot of areas in our life. We hate our homes, work, school, family, friends, co-workers—or our whole life in general.
Personally, I used to live with negative attitude. But fortunately, through my willingness to unlearn my old beliefs and openness to learn new ways of doing things, I was able to surpass that negative stage of my life. Eventually, I found happiness and success.
How did I change my negative outlook, to eventually become more positive and happy? Allow me to share with you a quick story.
A couple of years ago, before I started discovering, studying, and teaching personal development, I was limiting my happiness and success because of pessimism. I hated so many things in my life. I hated my work. I hated my teammates at work. I hated our family’s financial status. I hated the attitude of some family members. And I hated my ex-boyfriend who dumped me for another girl.
A day came I could no longer take all the hateful feelings and stress in my life. I decided to pack a few clothes and take a weekend off alone in a town in the mountaintop with no familiar people around. No friends, no family members, no co-workers, no boyfriend.
While I was staying at my hotel room and watching TV, I saw the talk show of a life preacher. Something about what he said changed my perspective in life.
He compared life crises, such as pain, hatred, or stress, to a journey in the forest. He asked the listeners to imagine a life crisis as if you are going to walk in the forest. At the beginning, it will be a bit tough to walk on forward because you feel scared and anxious with the unfamiliar path you are about to take. You may need to do work, cutting the grasses and large branches of trees in order to pass by.
The next morning, when you pass by the same route in the forest, it will now be much easier than the previous day. You are now more familiar with the new path. Although you may still feel a little discomfort, and you still have to cut few more grasses and branches of trees as you pass by.
As you continue passing along the same new path in the forest, each day that follows will be easier than the previous one. You will adapt to the new journey, and you’ll no longer feel pain, fears, doubts or anxiety. Eventually, you will feel comfortable and happy with your new path.
To end the story, the preacher then said, “if only you will be open to change your perspective, be more positive, and adaptable, you will see that that life crisis isn’t as hard as you think it is.”
After my soul-searching on the mountaintop, and hearing the story of the life preacher, I went back to my reality determined to change my perspective in life. In my desire to change and be more optimistic, I’ve read many different self-help books and I’ve even attended many self-improvement seminars. These have helped me develop, change, and keep a positive outlook in life.
To help others create the same positive change in their life, for them to start appreciating and stop hating, I’d like to share some of the principles in keeping a positive and happier life.
1. Thoughts become things
I’ve learned this phrase from the book, The Secret by Rhonda Byrne, which is based on the principle of the law of attraction. The law of attraction states that like attracts like. It means that when we are thinking negative thoughts, we attract more negative things into our life. And the same is true when we think of positive thoughts. We can bring happiness in our life by focusing our thoughts on the positive, not on the negative.
2. To be enthusiastic, act enthusiastic
I knew this principle when I attended the Dale Carnegie Course. Dale Carnegie said, “Enthusiasm is the little secret of success.” When you are able to develop and practice enthusiasm, it gives you positive energy for your daily tasks or activities.
3. Read books or articles on motivation and personal development
Positive attitude is a habit, and the same is true with negative attitude. To help us habitually maintain a positive outlook in life, we need constant reminders. Our reminder can be through reading books on personal development at least once a month, or subscribing to personal development websites which send weekly motivational articles.
4. Join an organization of like-minded positive people
Another way to be consistent in keeping a positive attitude is by becoming a member of organization that promotes personal growth and a positive attitude. Surrounding yourself with positive people can influence you to maintain and develop a habit of gratitude. As they say, attitude is contagious.
5. Attend training seminars on self-improvement
I have noticed that people who keep looking for ways to improve themselves end up happier and more successful than those who don’t. Attending training and seminars on self-improvement give you an opportunity to learn from the people you meet in the process, such as the trainer/coach and your co-participants. It’s also a chance to practice mingling with like-minded people.
6. Find and do something you’re passionate about
Passion is having strong desire or devotion towards something, like people, an activity, or a cause. When you are passionate with what you do, you are likely to enjoy working, and to produce an exceptional result. And when you enjoy what you do, the more likely you will be to be happier and positive in your perspective. If you want to be more successful in your life, find and work on something you are passionate about.
Changing attitudes and your perspective won’t happen overnight—it happens through continuous effort and action called habit. Which is why, in order to form a habit of positive attitude, you need to constantly follow guidelines I’ve mentioned above.
For a final note, let me leave you this quote to ponder:
When you are grateful fear disappears and abundance appears.—Anthony Robbins
Lou Macabasco-Yanuaria is a professional accountant, personal development coach, public speaker and entrepreneur. She writes and coach on positive attitude, productivity, stress management, success, personal finance and balanced life. Find out more about her works at Lifetofullest.com