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August 23, 2016

Three ways you can benefit from positive thinking

Mental Health Healthy Living

Content sponsored by IBC - Native (195x33)

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Making small changes to your life here and there can have a huge impact. Sometimes it’s hard to always stay positive when everyday challenges rear their ugly heads and stress builds upon stress. On days like this, you can’t help but think constant negative thoughts that get your mood down. But did you know that changing your attitude toward life can actually help you in the long run? Here are three ways positive thinking can dramatically improve your life:

1. Boost your health

It’s inevitable. You’re going to have terrible days when the sun just doesn’t seem to shine. That’s life. But don’t let stress bog your mind down with negative thoughts -- this could actually be destructive to your physical and mental well-being

Studies have proven that positive thinking, even in bad situations, can help you live longer, and even help prevent diseases such as heart conditions. Believe it or not, it can even help prevent the common cold, high cholesterol and slow down the aging process! Don’t believe it? Studies have proven positive thinking helps improve the quality and length of your life and that “people with a more positive outlook on aging lived an average of 7.5 years longer than the negative bunch.” Adding years onto your life? That’s a mega health benefit!

2. Improve your relationships

Your health isn’t the only aspect of your life that positive thinking can help enhance – your relationships can benefit as well. Disagreements, miscommunications, and pet peeves are going to happen between you and your partner. However, if you keep yourself from constantly thinking about only the negative things, then your outlook on your relationship will seem brighter.

In a study revolving around couples, it was “found that both positive thinkers and their partners have greater satisfaction in their relationships than optimist-free pairs.” Compliments, communication, and affection can go a long way in a relationship! Always remember to focus on the positives that count rather than just petty annoyances.

3. Overcome everyday challenges

A positive mindset can also help you overcome everyday challenges that are thrown at you. Whether you encounter obstacles at a job, school, or because of something health-related, your mindset can help you cope with whatever you’re dealing with. The most important thing is to, of course, stay positive, and don’t fall into the trap of thinking that you can’t do it. Instead, tell yourself that you can do it. Saying this aloud will only make it even more true to you.

Looking at challenges as a learning process (rather than negative obstacles) can also help keep your outlook on life positive. Barbara Fredrickson, a social psychologist at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, has studied how positive thinking impacts individuals over the last 25 years. According to Frederickson, positivity is the mindset that helps produce emotions such as joy, amusement, happiness, serenity, gratitude, and inspiration. Positive thinking will make it seem like you can do absolutely anything -- and who says you can’t?

See, being positive isn’t just an annoying thing mom always bugged you about -- the data proves it. So, don’t let those pesky negative thoughts bring you down anymore. Think positive thoughts and watch the quality of your life soar.

Try this class: Mindfulness Meditation: Every Thursday at Independence LIVE

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