We all want to feel happy and uplifted in our daily life, and display a positive attitude wherever we go. It’s even more crucial when it comes to social interaction.
You’ve felt it. You’re in a group of people, and somebody walks in with a black cloud hanging over their head. Their energy repels you, and you may find your own mood affected by it. There’s a distinct lack of positive energy and you don’t know what to do.
So, how do you maintain upbeat energy?
We all have bad days, but with a few simple tricks, you can avoid letting that black cloud grow. Here’s how to find your own positive energy for lasting optimism.
So Why Is Positive Energy So Important?
Ever heard the expression: “Your attitude determines your altitude”?
The way we perceive ourselves and the world around us has an enormous impact on our experiences.
Scientists reveal that positive thinking is much more than just being happy and having a positive attitude. Positive thoughts create real value in your life and help you shape your reality, heal you from within and build incredible skills that will propel you towards your bigger goals.
Three decades ago, in 1985, Psychologist Michael F. Scheier has done groundbreaking research that has given the scientific framework for exploring the real power of positive thinking.
Michael F. Scheier and Charles S. Carver’s published their seminal study, “Optimism, Coping, and Health: Assessment and Implications of Generalized Outcome Expectancies” in Health Psychology.
And in just the last year, numerous scientific studies and experiments have been conducted to examine the health effects of expecting good things to happen, which researchers call “dispositional optimism.”
These studies have proven that there is a direct link between a positive outlook on life to your overall health: physical, emotional, and mental.
The positive energy that you cultivate every day results in decreased feelings of loneliness and increased resilience to any hardships in life.
It is the fuel that drives you towards your bigger goals.
Fredrickson is a positive psychology researcher at the University of North Carolina, and she published a landmark paper that provides surprising insights about positive thinking and its impact on your skills. Her work is among the most referenced and cited in her field, and it is surprisingly useful in everyday life.
Wondering How You Can Get Positive Energy?
Positivity seems to come naturally for some, while others have to work for it.
If you find it challenging to maintain a positive outlook, take heart. It’s possible to learn how to give off that positive energy on a permanent basis!
Here are 11 ways to bring positive energy into your life:
1. Be aware of your negative thoughts and emotions
Barbara Fredrickson, a positive psychology researcher at the University of North Carolina, in her landmark paper, provides surprising insights into what negative thoughts and emotions do to your brain.
Negative emotions and thoughts narrow your brain and focus your thoughts.
This pure survival mechanism is based on our primal instincts. For instance, if you were hunting in the forest and suddenly encountered a tiger, your brain registers fear.
Every negative emotion is wired to a specific action. In this case, fear narrows your options to run.
How useful is this survival instinct in modern society?
But the truth is, your mind is programmed to respond to negative emotions in the same way. So every time you feel fearful, you automatically shut yourself off from the outside world and limit your options.
It’s crucial to empathize that it’s not about avoiding feeling fear or anger or thinking negative thoughts.
Stuff happens. But it’s how you respond that matters. If you choose to be victimized by what happens, your negative energy will gain momentum. Instead:
- Stop thinking about it if there’s nothing you can do to improve it (if a thought comes up about that situation, do not allow it to continue – force yourself to think about something else).
- Do not talk about it any more than you absolutely have to. Don’t give it energy!
- Find the blessings and lessons in any situation. This may take some time, but if you stay busy looking for them, you won’t dwell on how something negatively impacted you.
2. Avoid speaking of your problems, diseases, illnesses, or worries
The more energy you give what is wrong, the more it persists.
Yes, we all need to vent once in a while but if you vent, or even when you’re just thinking about what’s wrong, here are some rules:
- Don’t think or say: “I’m so sick, I feel like I’ve been run over by a truck! I don’t know how I’m going to get through the week!” Do think or say: “I caught some bug but I’m taking good care of myself and I’m feeling better every day!”
- Don’t think or say: “This job is terrible! My boss is a jerk and nobody appreciates me!” Do think or say: “I’m looking for a better job and meantime I’m trying to learn as much as I can so I benefit. In fact, my boss is the perfect example of how not to treat employees!”
If there is one thing that can really help you raise your vibration and maintain positive energy in life, it will be meditation.
In this research, Fredrickson and her colleagues revealed that people who meditate daily experience display more positive emotions than those who do not. On top of that, people who meditated also built valuable long-term skills. For example, three months after the experiment was over, the people who meditated daily continued to display increased mindfulness, purpose in life, social support, and decreased illness symptoms.
Most people get meditation wrong when they try to use it as a tool to get rid of their thoughts.
The use of meditation is to realize that everything including thoughts, emotions, and even feelings has one nature.
They are impermanent. They occur and they dissipate out of your control. So as you practice meditation, what you are practicing is dissociating yourself with your thoughts and emotions, with any construct that you perceive as self. It’s called a transpersonal consciousness that allows you to dwell on the positive energy of love, compassion, joy, peace, and unity.
Meditation practice helps you cultivate presence at the moment. When you withdraw yourself from the outside world, you tap into the essence of the present moment. And being fully in the present moment, you tap into higher consciousness devoid of fear and anxiety.
4. Avoid gossip
Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people.~ Eleanor Roosevelt
Not only is gossiping unethical and toxic, but it also instantly lowers your vibration. Why is it so?
At the core of it, gossip is about criticizing and judging others. Remember that everything is energy, so when you place your focus on judging others, you project negative energy, that will get back to you.
Gossiping drags your energy down and kickstarts the negative flow of energy. It works both ways – when you gossip yourself and when you are engaged in gossiping.
Every time you allow this in your energy field, you lower your vibration.
In order to eliminate gossip from your life, choose the right friends with whom you can share your perspectives, and discuss ideas.
When your family members start gossiping, if you can’t avoid it or change the course of it, communicate your position in a loving and compassionate way.
5. Avoid falling asleep with the TV on
It’s a rule of thumb that you shall reduce exposure to mass media and social media as much as possible, as they can easily drag your energy down.
You should especially stay away from violent TV shows and news that activate and reinforce your instinctive reactions.
And you should never fall asleep with the TV on because not only will it disrupt your circadian rhythms due to blue light exposure but also affect your subconscious.
When you are asleep, your mind goes into delta brainwave frequency. Delta waves are the slowest of all. It’s the direct access to your subconscious. And it’s the ideal choice for deep and powerful reprogramming.
So instead of exposing your subconscious to whatever is played on TV, you can listen to positive affirmations instead or meditation for deep relaxation while you are sleeping.
You will feel rejuvenated and uplifted the next morning.
6. Start journaling the moments of gratitude every day
This study, published in the Journal of Research in Personality, examined a group of 90 undergraduate students who were split into two groups. The first group wrote about an intensely positive experience each day for three consecutive days. The second group wrote about a control topic.
Three months later, the students who wrote about positive experiences had better mood levels, fewer visits to the health center, and experienced fewer illnesses.
Gratitude is one of the highest vibrational emotions that you can experience.
And when you journal your moment of gratitude every day, you instantly raise your vibration by simply thinking about those positive experiences. Remember, that your subconscious mind doesn’t make a difference between actual reality and imaginary. What you imagine is as real as what you perceive with your 5 senses. So thinking about positive moments has the same effect as actual experience.
Journaling literally allows you to repeat and relive your favorite experiences.
Acknowledge blessings in your life and write down at least 5 things that you are grateful for every day.
7. Visualize the best scenarios
As mentioned above, you can use your imagination to ‘trick’ your mind into positive thinking.
We tend to create the worst scenarios in our mind, but instead, visualize what can go right, instead of what can go wrong. Train yourself to visualize the best-case scenario.
Be solution-oriented, not problem-oriented. Think only about the ideal situation, not the current problematic situation.
8. Let go of the past
You can’t undo anything. It’s done.
Forgive others, forgive yourself.
Learn from your mistakes, learn from others’ mistakes, remember that no unkind or thoughtless action ever comes from love but from a place of deep inner pain (you can be compassionate to that pain without condoning the acting out of it) and release the energetic burden you carry: grudges, resentments, pain, hurt, disappointments, sadness, anger, guilt.
Let it all go.
9. Laugh! Smile!
“Laughter is the best medicine.”
Numerous studies have proven that laughter decreases stress hormones and increases immune cells and infection-fighting antibodies.
Laughter triggers the release of endorphins, the body’s natural feel-good chemicals, which in their turn, promote an overall sense of well-being.
Surround yourself with upbeat people who make you laugh. Laugh as often as you can remember.
10. Sweat it off
Exercise physically removes you from your problems, and it also removes you mentally. If you’re worried about something, you need to give your brain a chance to process things.
When you work out, your body produces BDBF (brain-derived neurotrophic factor), a protein that helps repair brain cells damaged by stress.
Exercising also floods your system with feel-good endorphins and instantly releases stress.
And in the middle of a long bike ride, walk or swim… or in the middle of the climbing wall, you may suddenly have an epiphany. Or, at least for a while, you will be fully present and not worried about the future.