I invite you to join in having a discussion on how thinking positive to stay healthy, especially during covid, can benefit us. I’d like to share my thoughts and a turning point in my life. I think most of us are aware of things like eating right, staying hydrated, getting some amount of exercise, and doing things like washing our hands and even choosing to wear a mask, not only for ourselves but for others too. But I believe there’s an oversight that hasn’t garnered much attention, and it’s health related to how we think. If we look around and pay attention, there’s a lot of polarizing issues and divisiveness occurring in countries across the globe, and here in America we have an election year along with covid. People unfortunately are taking sides such as red or blue, mask or anti mask, each side creating an us v them mentality, and each one believing they’re right with few stopping to think about the greater whole instead of just the individual self. There seems to be a growing divide and conquer thought process. I think this is largely fueled by fear, bad news and deliberate fear mongering by media with consequences that are not limited to dividing communities and destroying friendships and families.
I think in todays world we need calmness and sensibility, thinking and acting from a place of centeredness and calm that is rooted in positive thinking, instead of reacting with emotion and the ego. I imagine there are at least a few out there who would agree with me.
Negative thinking, especially the continuous, daily worry not just from problems from each owns personal life but also “news” and the spillover that occurs in non-traditional internet news sources like youtube or reddit. Negative information and bad news is everywhere regardless of whether it's credible or fake. It can be difficult to avoid and it can be stressful, and mental stress can cause physical health problems aside from having a poor outlook.
Fear, worry and despair are mind poison. Are you familiar with the old saying don’t worry yourself sick
, or you’re gonna worry yourself to death
? I think there’s a reason old cliche’s stick around and I think there’s something to it. I believe the solution, dare I say cure, is love. Thinking positive and from a place of love can have many benefits, including health benefits, and often without trying it can spread to others, benefiting them, and it’s not difficult. Simple things like thinking about how great next seasons garden is going to be instead of whatever worrying thought of the moment. Smiling and waving to a neighbor manifests love. Taking a few seconds to write I love you on a scrap piece of paper and giving it to your spouse, child or parent will manifest love and positive thinking. Try it, it may make you smile, and I think most assuredly will make the recipient smile. Spontaneous things like these interrupt autopilot thought processes like worry for both people. Perhaps even deliberately start a conversation with a friend, housemate, child or spouse to talk about something positive and get the mind off the hamster wheel of worry.
We are often creatures of habit, and I think the first step to changing how we think is awareness. If we notice the negative thinking, then we are aware and suddenly a choice presents itself. Now it’s up to each of us to willfully keep thinking negative or to change and choose to think of something positive. And when we slip back into negative thinking, soon we will notice again and have a choice again. And each time we notice, awareness builds. As we consciously choose positive thinking when our idle minds want to wander into the negative space, positive thinking displaces the negative. And if we visualize a pie chart, with time the positive slice grows and one day, it will be greater than the negative slice. And as days grow to be joyful, the negative will continue to decline. Thinking positive from a place of love nurtures not only the person doing the positive thinking, but it also has positive effects on others that interact with them.
Not too long ago I had an epiphany of thought. I imagined myself old and dying, reflecting back on my life. And I thought about a lifetime of negative thinking, worry and fear and realizing that I squandered a lifetime in mental suffering and all the self-inflicted limitations that comes with it. Then I imagined myself reflecting back on a life of having positive thoughts, having days of learning and creating and doing things that are joyful and benefit not only myself but others as well. And I then realized I couldn’t go back, and began to consciously choose to think positive and my life has changed forever. I can say it’s amazing, and I feel great. Change your thinking, change your life.
I hope this post inspires at least one person to choose to change how they think.
More reading for those so inclined:
Positive Thinking in Coping with Stress and Health outcomes: Literature Review