The Power of Positive Thinking

The Power of Positive Thinking

Much of psychology’s hard work and dedication has been devoted to studying negative emotions and their effects on the mind and body. However, psychology is not only the study of negative emotions, psychology also includes positive emotions! From a psychological perspective, positive emotions are often overlooked or thought of as less important. However, studying positivity will allow us to determine the effects that feeling good can have. This is the premise of positive psychology! Positive psychology strives for self optimization and encompasses the belief that we should not only attempt to fix the negative emotions but learn how to utilize positive emotions to have positive outcomes. Positive psychology shifts the perspective from distress and symptom management to maintaining a healthy lifestyle and mindset.

Positive psychology focuses on “what works?” versus “what doesn’t.” Being in a positive headspace more regularly will foster resilience against negativity and allow you to have more positive perceptions. Positive thinking improves emotional wellbeing and contributes to long term changes in thought processes.

How can you practice positive psychology? First, it is important to note that positive psychology does not mean being happy 100% of the time. Positive psychology simply chooses to highlight the positive moments of your life! By doing so, your brain is in a more content state that increases the chance of experiencing happiness more frequently. Positive psychology chooses to highlight the benefits of positivity, just like we know the consequences of negative emotions.

Some ways that people can integrate these principles into their lives include:

  •  Seeking out positive meaning in daily activities
  •  Consciously experiencing gratitude
  •  Practicing mindfulness

Mindfulness describes being present in the moment. While many choose to practice this through meditation, mindfulness can be achieved through any activity where you can focus on experiencing the present

  • Focusing on your strengths
  • Challenging negative thoughts with positive ones
  • Nurturing meaningful relationships
  • Creating attainable goals and an action plan to reach them
  • Practicing optimism consistently to accustom your brain to exploring positive possibilities when experiencing stressful situationsSome may find these sorts of activities “wishy-washy” but positive psychology’s benefits are heavily researched and supported scientifically. The principles of positive psychology correlate with healthier living and increased wellbeing. Shifting to a more positive perspective allows you to create a more balanced lifestyle. By only listening to your negative emotions you are in a state of lack, but by incorporating positive emotions you bring yourself to a balance and can begin to flourish!

by Jenna Morrison