The Importance of a Positive Attitude


Amanda Jones

‘Be Positive’ Scrabble Pieces

Life is unpredictable. It has a way of throwing the most absurd and unexpected things at us, and unfortunately, that is the one thing about it that will remain consistent. Though we may not be able to control the absurdities life has planned for us, we can control the way we act and respond when they happen–with the help of something that many people may gloss over: a positive attitude.

In simple terms, positive thinking means looking at situations in an optimistic light rather than a pessimistic one. Rather than focusing on all the negatives, look on the bright side, and find silver linings in the worst of the worst.

Unfortunately, for a lot of people, being told to simply ‘stay positive’ in the face of adversity can be one of the most annoying things to hear; “Why make light of a bad situation?”

A very common misconception is that being positive automatically means sugar-coating every bad thing that happens to you–but it’s not.

While adapting to a more positive way of life, it is important to recognize that it doesn’t mean being positive all the time. It’s especially important to recognize that it is more than okay to feel sad, and it’s okay to allow yourself to feel negative emotions, but do not let yourself be consumed by them.

A crucial step to take before anything else is to stop negative self-talk. When you make a mistake, don’t immediately jump into the idea that you are a screw up; take the mistake as an opportunity to learn and better yourself. If something doesn’t turn out the way you wanted to, instead of focusing on your weaknesses, focus on your strengths–what did you do well?

Another way to implement more positivity in your life is to be more grateful. Try and find at least five things every day to appreciate–maybe you were able to bring one of your favorite foods for lunch, or maybe you were able to wake up a little earlier than the previous day. Focus on the good things happening in your life, and realize that the bad things aren’t going to swallow you whole because, like everything, bad things are temporary.

The benefits of having a more positive mindset are, quite literally, life changing. A positive mindset could help lower a risk for different conditions and diseases, improve overall mental health, and help physical health. As stated in an article by Mayo Clinic, “One theory is that having a positive outlook enables you to cope better with stressful situations, which reduces the harmful health effects of stress on your body.”
Dealing with the negatives in life can be very overwhelming. At times, it may seem hopeless to even look at things in a positive life because it can very often feel like there is no good way to look at a situation. This is why it’s important to focus on the good things, no matter how small they may be. A positive mindset can help the hopeless feel hopeful in the worst situations.