I was looking again at a NYTimes article about turning negative thinkers into positive ones.  I liked that the article not only described the benefits of positive emotions, and the hazards of negative emotions, but then discussed strategies to foster positive thinking.

Negative thinking can affect the amygdyla, which can increase health problems.  Positive thinking can help heart rate, blood pressure, blood glucose levels, and other biolological effects, in addition to psychological effects of a can-do attitude.

Quoting, "taking time to learn the skills to self-generate positive emotions can help us become healthier, more social, more resilient versions of ourselves".

Among strategies that the article suggests, to help nurture a positive attitude -

- Do good things for others.  I want to add, say positive and encouraging things to others, which is a way of good.  Find the good in your partners and other people, and express those good thoughts.

- Appreciate the things you do and places you go, such as nature.

- Build good relationships.  I remind myself, that can involve people, and the introvert in me needs to accept that.  Especially, build those relationships with people who have positive outlook.

- Learn new things.  I just, AGAIN, picked up my Spanish tutorials, and got through the first 4 lessons this week.  I have been feeling bored, and needed to find something to work on. 

- Accept yourself, including things that others, and yourself, consider flaws.  Failures are necessary for existence, and can lead to changes of direction that bring other successes.  Marketing and movies create bizarre expectations for physical appearance and stamina, and we need to step back and appreciate who we are.  Age is an accomplishment, not a failure.  What we consider disability, is something we adapt to or overcome.  Beauty is truly in the eye of the beholder.

- Take negative events as ways to learn resilience.  Strategize to overcome adversity and use bad things to create good.

- Let go of things you can’t control and focus on the here-and-now.  The article states, "practice mindfulness".  I feel like that verges on psychobabble, but i appreciate the thought. 

- not in the article, sometimes we need to not read too much negativity, and avoid too much interaction with negative, pessimistic people, because they drag you down without helping to find a light at the end of the tunnel.  Then it's time to skip  that link, or read something else.   Sometimes we can't help but look at a train wreck, but it's usually better, to seek other excitement.  That includes our own thoughts - sometimes venting has a place, but sometimes the more negative things we express, the worse we can feel.  Sometimes, gallows humor has a place, but sometimes we have to actively re-route our thoughts to a happier place.

I have been through many challenges and hardships in my own life, and have also had successes that I could not have expected.  There has been much grief, and loneliness, and much comaraderie, friendship, and sometimes love.   It's hard to see the positive during tragedies and oppression, and bad events, but sometimes we can light a light and start to see things differently, and start working again on a better life. 

We only live once.  Life is short, and there is much tragedy.  There can also be much joy. 

"When you go home, fill the house with joy so that the light of it will stream out the windows and doors and illuminate even the darkness. It is just as easy that way as any in the world."

- Robert Green Ingersoll

and my favorite, always,

Happiness is the only good. The time to be happy is now. The place to be happy is here. The way to be happy is to make others so.”

- Robert Green Ingersoll

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I am not responsible for whether other people are happy or not, but I do know it is suicide to live with a negative person. 

I like Laura's style, she wakes up with a happy greeting to everyone, finds something good about everyone, which keeps me on my toes because I am a world-class judge. When a problem or conflict occurs, she used active listening to hear the other person, speaks her mind and clearly and non-judgmentally as she can, and then looks for ways to solve the situation with input from others and critical thinking to find a solution that all can work with. 

A good example is how she uses her work crews. She knows the skills of each employee, she knows what they don't like. She spells out the project describing what she wants the end product to be. She breaks the tasks according to function: some are good at planning,  some at physical labor, some are good at keeping inventory, others at writing. There are times when people need to be able to cross-over to another task and they do it willingly. She keeps the team working as a team, not as individuals working on their projects. She keeps them focused on the end result. When the task completes, all celebrate!

Good one Daniel.

A lot of religious people are that way.  They especially want to see atheists suffer.  Perhaps because they’re suffering with cognitive dissidence, along with shame, guilt, and fear.



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