What Is The Power Of Positive Thinking?

Does thinking positively really have any benefits? Can the power of the human mind have control over your health, attitude, or emotions. Psychologists have begun studying the affect that positive thinking can have on an individual ever since the advent of positive psychology in the late 90’s. Whereas the concept of positive thinking was largely left to self-help gurus in the past, rigorous psychological and psychiatric studies are being conducted on positive thinking.

Positive thinking is an attitude cultivated within the mind that only allows thoughts, words, and images that are conducive to growth, expansion and success. Positive thinking tries to eliminate the negative self-talk that most people experience on a daily basis. Instead, a positive mind anticipates health, success, joy, and happiness in every situation. What we are beginning to see is that what the mind expects, it finds. Why not expect happiness?

Some people scoff at the idea of positive thinking. At first glance, you can understand their position. Blind belief in positive thinking without any positive action to back it up sounds suspiciously like a “miracle pill” for happiness. If that’s only what positive thinking entailed, I’d have to agree. However, positive thinking allows for a whole range of positive outcomes that are directly related to taking a positive outlook on life.

For example, lets imagine that you are being interviewed for a new job. You are sure you’re not going to be hired and on the day of the interview you got up late. As you were rushing around to get ready for the interview, you didn’t have time to eat breakfast and you realised the shirt you were going to wear was dirty. Your only other shirt option was very wrinkled, but what else could you do? You leave your house harried and dishevelled.

Upon arriving at the interview you are tense and display a negative attitude. You’re sure you’re not going to get the job, so why does it matter, right? You’re hungry because you didn’t have time to eat in the morning which results in you being distracted and giving an overall poor impression at the interview. Sure enough, you end up not getting the job, thus fulfilling your negative prophecy.

What would this scenario have looked like if you were thinking positively? Lets say you spent the week visualising doing well in the interview. On the day of the interview you wake up early and make sure you take care of everything you need to do to feel good before you arrive at the office. You are confident that you will get the job and that confidence carries over into how you conduct yourself at the interview. You give an overall good first impression and you end up getting the job.

There is no magic or huge difference, other than mental state, between these two examples. Thinking positively will indirectly affect a whole slew of characteristics and actions that will engender greater success in your life.

If you are interested in tapping into this source of power, there are some things you can do to improve your capability. Like nearly everything else, taking the time to practice this skill is key. Unfortunately, positive thinking cannot be turned on like a light switch. It requires you to slowly replace negative attitudes and thoughts with more positive alternatives.

At first, try focusing on just very minor negative thoughts and attitudes. If you find yourself being annoyed by something, try to become aware of that and replace the negative thoughts with something more positive. The more you do this the more you will become conscious of how you’re thinking and when negative thoughts are entering your mind. Gradually, begin to work on larger negative thoughts and attitudes that pervade other areas of your life. With practice you will learn to replace the negativity with a more positive outlook.

 

Written by Karen Bell

What Is the Power of Belief?

The power of belief is also known as positive thinking. The idea is that you have the ability and the power to choose what you believe or allow into your thoughts. Some people almost exclusively think of negative things. Negative emotions, attitudes, events, and outcomes pervade their minds. Others, people with the power of belief or positive thinking, focus on more positive outcomes. They only allow thoughts of happiness, success, and joy to enter their minds.

Psychologists have done extensive work on discovering what power positive thinking and beliefs have on life success. They have discovered that people are likely to experience that they expect to experience. Why not utilise the power of belief to expect positive outcomes? The power of belief is incredibly empowering if it is utilised in the best way possible.

Many people look at the power of belief or positive thinking as nothing more than hoping for the best without taking steps to actually make it a reality. The power of belief is more than just hoping for positive outcomes, though. It is using your individual power to choose what you believe and then taking the steps that naturally arise from that belief. For instance, believing you will do well in a job interview usually leads to a whole series of steps to make that a reality. You envision yourself doing well and therefore your stress level is lower when you finally sit down to talk to your interviewer. Your low stress level allowed you to be calm and focused the morning before and has therefore resulted in you giving a positive overall first impression.

However, the power of belief can work both ways. If you believe that you will not get hired for a job, you are likely to find yourself not getting the job. Your negative power of belief will result in a number of actions that will make it more difficult for you to get the job. You don’t think you have a chance at being hired so you don’t take time to present yourself in a positive fashion. You are nervous and stressed during the interview, making it more difficult to give good responses to the questions. Because of your belief, negative in this case, you are served with the outcome that you believed would happen.

Sometimes our beliefs are not founded on fact. It is important to identify and challenge our beliefs that are built on flimsy premises. For example, what do you believe about snakes? If you dislike them, maybe you believe they are slimy and unclean? Perhaps you believe they are dangerous? But have you ever taken the time to truly learn about the snakes in your area? How many poisonous ones are there? Have you ever handled a snake? You would find that it is not slimy or unclean at all. Many people take their beliefs at face value without ever questioning where they got that belief.

It is important to spend some time identifying and improving your beliefs. What beliefs do you currently hold that are limiting you in some way? For example, many students believe they aren’t good at a specific subject because of some past experience. Beliefs are always just generalisations from past experiences. It can be dangerous to extrapolate that one experience, perhaps a bad test grade, into something larger, like being bad at an entire subject. It can be a helpful exercise to sit down and write a list of the biggest beliefs that are limiting you in some way. Once you have that list, you can begin challenging and improving those beliefs one by one.

 

Written by Karen Bell