Is this glass half empty or half full?
Some people are naturally pessimistic and are happy being so. They view themselves as pragmatic and as having a better sense of reality. They are the self-proclaimed realists of the world. And then there are those of us who feel weighed down by negativity and wish that we could be more optimistic. This is completely possible. It all lies in the way we perceive things…
1. Stress management When we conceal our anxieties, they only build. Each concern can snowball into a feeling of being overwhelmed. Each person has their own way of letting off steam. This varies from exercise, to listening to music, to reading a good book, and so on. More of us are beginning to realize how important proper stress management is to both our physical and mental health. Find what works for you and incorporate it into everyday life. Feeling stress-free is the first step towards a positive attitude.
2. Constant reality checks It is sometimes necessary to debate the validity of your concerns to determine whether they are rational or irrational. This is called self-rationalization and one of the most recognized methods is the worst case scenario. This is when you consider the worst possible situation, then go on to consider whether it is likely to happen. For example, a loved one said they would call once they arrived by subway to a certain destination. They should have reached that destination 15 minutes ago. You may dream up scenarios of there being a train accident or some other frightful incident having taken place. But after a little thought, you find that it’s more probable that they either have yet to reach their destination or are simply too busy to call at that moment. You never want to leap to conclusions and cause yourself unnecessary grief.
3. Support of friends and family Friends and family are usually more than willing to provide you with a much-needed reality check, encouragement, or a sympathetic ear. Not everyone is fortunate enough to have close friends and family members to confide in though. It is detrimental to find some type of support when you are feeling extremely confused or overwhelmed. This support may have to come from a healthcare practitioner, counsellor, or a member of a support group. Sometimes all it takes is another person’s point of view to put things into perspective.
4. Own your feelings Accept that you have complete control over your perceptions and internal responses. You may not have control over what happened on your commute to work that upset you. But you are able to decide whether you brush it off and move on with your day or become frustrated, claiming you are always being dealt a bad hand.
5. Surround yourself with positive people You are who you associate with. Avoid people who are always complaining, insulting others behind their backs, insulting others to their faces, or generally trying to bring you down. Misery loves company. Positive people serve as inspiration, support, and role models.
Remember, people who wonder whether the glass is half empty or half full miss the point. The glass is refillable.