We are exhorted by personal development professionals, to have a positive outlook, to remain optimistic, and to eradicate negative thinking. But let’s face it, these are tough economic times and there can be days when we struggle a bit, when we feel out of sorts, under pressure, or when we are just having a low energy day.
So what can we do? Do we write off 24 hours and put it down to being ‘just an off day’? We need to bear in mind that the day in question is a unique, one-off, never to be repeated opportunity. So let’s not simply consign that gift to the bin hoping that the next one is going to be better. Why not get on to the front foot and try to pull the day around to our way of thinking?
The easiest way of trying to break into a negative thought process is breaking the routine. This does not have to mean something that will really eat hugely into our time, especially if we are at work and things are weighing us down – it may only need the time it takes to have a coffee break. So instead of sighing, rocking back on our chair and wallowing in a hot drink.
Book something nice to do: A walk with friends, origami classes, a restaurant, a play, an art gallery, whatever you like doing. Do this not because it is something to look forward to but because you will actually enjoy booking it.
E-mail a friend: Get in touch with someone who perhaps you do not contact that regularly or ring or text an aged relative – just because we are having a bad day does not mean that we cannot make theirs. They will be delighted and it will rub off.
Go out of our way to be nice to a work colleague: Again try someone you do not, ordinarily, have much contact with. They will respond and so will your mood.
Make sure to engage in positive eye contact: with those around you. You will have to concentrate more than usual to do this as you are not going to be in the best of moods but it will work.
Of course there is always the voice in our ear telling us we do not have the time for any of this. The truth is that if we are having a bad day then we are going to be far more productive with our enthusiasm back on track – so a ‘time out’ will be time very well spent.
Turning around a tough day may not be easy but it can be done. Ultimately it is how we think about things - how we react to events and people - that decides whether or not we are having a good day. The quality of our day is governed by what we choose to think about. On those days when our positive thinking may need a little kick-start, and we all get them, it is up to us. We should bear in mind that when negativity seems to have the upper hand we can choose to inject some of the good stuff. Positivity is just as infectious so let’s catch some and make sure others do too.