Photo: Bright Idea by zaldy icaonapo
Positive Thinking is mentally focusing on the best possible outcome from any situation. In whatever form it may appear, all our positive thinking comes down to one thing. Wanting to find happiness.
Creative Visualisation is the technique of mentally picturing an outcome. Using this technique, athletes run the race in their mind, before they leave the starting blocks. Studies by Russian scientists indicated that those who spent 25% of their time training physically and 75% of their time engaged in mental training had more success than those who spent 100% of their time in purely physical training. Visualisation is now considered an essential part of top-level preparation in the world of sport and beyond.
What successful outcomes can be created? Success is subjective, so you get to choose. You decide what success means for you. You are the one creating your own reality with your thoughts and actions. It may be making your first million or taking your last cigarette – whatever matters the most to you. It certainly helps if the desired outcome is closer to your current level of thinking – as there will be less resistance to overcome – but that shouldn’t rule out thinking big… The stronger the emotions linked to the outcome, the more powerful the results.
How does this work? Over time, thoughts become beliefs, and beliefs become actions. Basically, our beliefs are thoughts that we have repeated until they become our truths. Psychologists have found that we tend to act in ways that support our attitudes. If someone assumes they are “stupid”, then they subconsciously behave in a way that confirms that belief.
Our mind also filters our experiences to fit our internal self-image. If you have a positive mind-set, then you tend to accept positive situations and not dismiss them as “flukes”. You will also see negative experiences as temporary obstacles, rather than as evidence of a flawed character.
You don’t have to ignore challenges to overcome them. In fact it can be harmful and counter-productive to do so. But you can re-frame them. The inventor Thomas Edison said “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” He chose to see what others would call a set-back, as part of the pathway to his success.
So, should you be wearing a smiley face and chanting “Om”? If all you’re doing is suppressing natural emotions; this is not a healthy place to be. It may be appropriate and necessary to work through negative feelings. But positive thinking gives you an alternative. Think of it as having a new toolkit in the garage.
So, is the glass half full or half empty? You get to choose!