One of the main reasons we are constantly trying to find ways to improve ourselves is because we want to be happy. But as happiness is a state of mind, training your mind to be happy is essential.
Happiness is a choice, not a result. Nothing will make you happy until you choose to be happy. No person will make you happy unless you decide to be happy. Your happiness will not come to you. It can only come from you.
You may say that happiness is not just from the inside, it’s also from the outside. For example, we feel happy when we go shopping for our favourite items. We feel happy when we’ve paid of our debts. We feel happy when we feel appreciated, valued, loved, and accepted. We feel happy when we get to work on something we love. We feel happy when we give something to or help those we love and someone in need.
But more often than not, we realize that we face more of the little things that affect how we feel each day. These things might seem uncontrollable and inevitable - things like bad traffic, bad whether, tight exam dates, working hours you have to put up with, irritating personality traits of someone you work or live with, the economics of a country, an illness of your loved one, the disappointment you have in someone, or the disappointment you have in yourself because of a rejection.
Whatever the situation might be, there’s always a positive side of story. To train your mind to be resilient and feel positive through obstacles is not easy but it can surely be done. Below are the steps of how you can become a positive person.
1. Start with knowing what ‘perspective’ is.
Per-spec-tive (noun) — a mental view or outlook
The first step to becoming positive is to know the existence of “perspective” - to know that you can change the way you view things and that things are not fixed as there are.
Most negative people are usually fixed on the negative state of something. They can never see the positive side of a situation because they believe there is only one side to it which is the side that they see.
If you yourself are trying to become positive and you have come across this article, congratulations, you have established the desire, the goal, and are hopefully moving towards gaining a willpower to execute and pull through.
It is easy to fall back into the trap of negative thinking. But the important thing is the start - knowing that you can be better and moving towards achieving that.
If it’s someone close to you that you’re looking to help change, you need to realize that they might not even see that they’re negative or that there’s a better way of living and seeing things.
There will be a point when the negative person realizes that they are negative and that’s why they have been unhappy and no one likes to be around them or hear them speak (because all they do is whine or complain).
If worse comes to worst, then there will be a point when someone actually has the courage to tell the negative friend that they need to change, or else no one will hang around them anymore because they keep weighing other people down.
To slowly showing light to the negative friend, you have to point out the good in every situation until they realize that it is true. For example, it’s raining outside so you can’t go out. Instead of sulking about the weather, point out that you can actually spend the time doing work at home or watching a movie. When the traffic is bad, instead of feeling frustrated the whole way through, point out that you can spend the time in the car chatting, doing some work on the phone, checking email, or checking out music. When rejection occurs either at work or in love, point out that it’s meant to be that way so that there is room for better things to come in.
There is always a positive side of something no matter how bad the situation is. The key is to realize that it’s a matter of “perspective” and that we have the control over that.
2. Realize that you have control over yourself.
There are always things that make you feel negative - losing things, wasting time, running out of money, hurting yourself by accident, frustrating technology, or toxic friends. You cannot control everything but what you can control is yourself.
You can improve yourself to be punctual so you are never late to a meeting.
You can learn to control yourself from impulse spending so you don’t have any financial problems.
You can become more careful and mindful so you don’t lose things or hurt yourself.
You can eat healthy and exercise so that you don’t gain weight and feel low on energy.
If you are not willing to change yourself in order to change the situations, then it will be hard to keep yourself out of unpleasant circumstances. The circumstances you can control and improve with a better self will not get better unless you do.
3. Destroy jealousy.
It is normal to feel jealous of someone who has what you don’t. But letting jealousy take over your mind will only kill you. People do all sorts of crazy things out of jealousy. Your mind could go crazy.
When you feel jealous, acknowledge what it is that you’re jealous of and why you feel jealous. Realize that you do have something that the person you’re jealous of doesn’t have.
If it’s money, then maybe you have a more wicked sense of humour, better personality traits, a more vibrant social life, or more time to spend with your family.
If it’s a successful business, then look at how hard they have worked before they got to this point. Most of the time we don’t see the hardship, we only see the beautiful success story.
If it’s the looks, then think about how much time and money the person spends on keeping fit. If it’s their natural beauty you’re jealous of, then.. who knows… maybe you have better brains.
If it’s happiness, then it’s probably because that person has a peace of mind and doesn’t feel jealous of other people no matter what reason.
4. Eliminate anger.
Anger is only within you although when you’re angry you’re hoping that the person you’re mad at suffers. However, it’s you who feel the burning fire within.
To eliminate anger, you have to try to understand why the person did what they did and accept it. Do not hold grudges because it only stays in your mind. If the person has hurt or disappointed you badly, then evaluate whether you want to kick them out of your life or just forgive and forget.
5. Accept what you can’t control and learn to be resilient, patient, calm, understanding, and accepting.
You can’t control the weather, so why get upset about it? Accept it and enjoy it.
You can’t force technology to work sometimes, then just accept it and be patient.
You can’t force the traffic to move faster during peak hours, just accept it and think of ways to make use of the time.
You can’t magically fix the lift that is out of order, accept it and see it as a chance to exercise more.
Use unpleasant circumstances that you can’t control as an exercise to train yourself to be resilient, patient, and calm. Over and over, your mind will be stronger and you won’t get grumpy or frustrated anymore. You will accept things as they are.
6. Find the positive side of it.
There is always a positive side even in the worst situations like losing a family member, getting fired, getting injured, having an illness, or losing money.
Every setback in life is actually an opportunity for you to rise higher mentally.
Life is only going to hit you harder and the only way to get through it is to have a good mentality, a positive mind, and the mental strength to stay optimistic and keep moving on happily.