Positive Thinking – That Works – Isn’t Lying to Yourself

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Because I generally have a positive outlook, I frequently have people ask me, “Greg, you’re not one of those positive thinkers looking at the world through rose colored glasses are you?” Well, yes and no.

I am a positive thinker, but I’m not someone who ignores problems and pretends everything is perfect. That’s not being positive and optimistic. That’s being stupid.

The optimist throws the curtains open and says, “Good morning, God!” The pessimist rolls over and says, “Good god, it’s morning.”

If you are having trouble paying your bills and instead of doing anything to fix the problem you simply think positive and hope your bills get paid, they will eventually come take your car and foreclose on your house.

But that doesn’t mean the only thing you can do is focus on your poor financial situation. There is always more than one reality.

Reality 1: You don’t have enough money coming in.

Reality 2: You have a good job. You have opportunities for advancement. Maybe you can ask for some overtime work, or take on some extra responsibilities and earn a promotion. You have skills to earn extra income. You could start a side business via the Internet. You could cut back on some of your expenses that aren’t necessities, etc.

The reality you focus on will greatly affect your mood, actions and outcome.

Remember, you aren’t lying to yourself or ignoring reality. You are choosing to focus on the reality that will help you the most. And that is key:

  • You get to choose your reality
  • You get to choose your attitude
  • You get to choose how you react
  • You get to choose to be happy

“Do not allow negative thoughts to enter your mind for they are weeds that strangle confidence.”
–Bruce Lee

Research shows that to get the best results you need to focus on the positives three times as much as the negatives.

Action steps:

  1. Pay attention to your thoughts. When you have a negative thought, yell STOP! (If other people are around, you may want to use your inside voice. We don’t want the men in white suits coming to get you with a net.) Replace that negative thought with a realistic positive thought.
  2. Focus on those positive thoughts and take action on them to improve your situation.
  3. Every night write down three new things you are thankful for. They can be something big or little that happened that day, or anything in your life your are grateful for. The trick is to come up with 3 new things each day. (Research shows this simple exercise significantly improves our happiness.)

It’s something all of us can start doing today. When I do it, I move forward and feel better.

Let me know how it works for you.

Let’s GO!

I want to give as many people as possible my free eBook, 5 Steps to Finding Your Purpose. Please forward this to a friend who needs it. If they click here, they can get the free eBook.

Two of the most POWERFUL words we don’t use enough

In our personal relationships and in business

thanks

How do you feel when you get a real thank you? I’m not talking about a “thanks” for holding the door, passing the ketchup, or a perfunctory thanks for taking my phone call. Those are all fine, but how do you feel when you get a sincere, meaningful thank you? How do you feel when someone looks you in the eye, gives you a firm handshake – or even a hug – and says, “I really want to thank you for ________. It means a lot to me and I’ll never forget it.”? How do you feel when someone hand writes you a heartfelt message and a “Thank You” on personal stationery?

Awesome, right?

“A sincere ‘thank you’ can change the day – even the life – of the receiver and the giver. Who do you need to thank today?” 

A sincere, “thank you” creates an emotional bond between both parties. It encourages the person you’re thanking. It lets them know they count in this world, they’re making a difference, and they touched your life. It also makes you feel better, elevates your relationships, and often leads to more business (bonus!).

So why don’t we do it more? We tell ourselves:

  • We’re busy
  • The other person knows we appreciate them and doesn’t care if we say “thank you” anyway
  • We don’t know how to say it
  • It’s too much trouble.

All wrong.

Here’s how we need to answer those negative thoughts we tell ourselves:

  • We’re busy – Everyone’s busy, but no one’s too busy to give or receive a thank you 
  • The other person knows we appreciate them and doesn’t care if we say “thank you” anyway – The other person doesn’t know how you feel unless you tell them, and they do care
  • We don’t know how to say it –  Just say what you feel
  • It’s too much trouble – It only takes a few minutes and can cause joy and even miracles.

I think there’s one other reason we don’t say thank you enough…It can be scary.

When you admit that you needed someone’s help, or you couldn’t have done it without them, or you care about someone, you are making yourself vulnerable.

Being vulnerable does open you up to being hurt, but it also opens you up to deeper relationships and bigger opportunities.

You can take the risk to be vulnerable, offer a sincere thank you,  and make an impact.  Or you can play it “safe,” stay quiet, and miss your opportunity. Which will you choose?

Questions for comments: Who are you going to sincerely thank today? What happened when you did?

I want to give as many people as possible my free eBook, 5 Steps to Finding Your Purpose. Please forward this to a friend who needs it. If they click here, they can get the free eBook.

Let’s GO!