Being an optimist myself, I have always chosen to focus on the bright side of things, on the things that I could change and improve. Thus, I would like to share some ideas on how to focus on the good side of things and drive out those negative thoughts through three simple steps!
1. Focus on things within your control
It is not always easy to put on a smiley face and face the day with vigor when there are so many things seemingly out of your control. Instead, I would focus on things within my control and direct my emotions and efforts towards things that I can change. A quick reflection will allow me to identify factors within my control, such as personal effort and attitude, and these factors can be easily worked on, with a little determination and hard work of course. Rather than focusing on the extrinsic factors, such as luck and the external environment, bringing the focus inwards, onto myself, makes me realize the control and power within me. With this realization, the once chaotic situation would fall nicely in place, as hey, you just realized you are empowered and in control!
Though easier said than done, a nice way to get started would be to list down all the factors contributing to your mini crisis and then subsequently sorting them into “intrinsic” and “extrinsic” factors. With everything written and sorted out nicely, bring your focus to the “intrinsic” factors and brainstorm about ways to overcome those. Writing them out definitely helps to clear your mind and bring about a sense of accomplishment. With so many things that you can change, there is definitely no time to sit around and wallow in self-pity and doubt, it’s time to work on your personal qualities and bring about the change that you want to see!
Introverts may find this difficult, but not to worry, I am an introvert myself and yes, this method has definitely worked for me! Though you may find your problems to be too personal, sensitive or even trivial, do not be afraid to share them with your trusted friends. For one, friends are a good source of emotional support, though they are not professional counsellors, their mere presence would bring about a sense of warmth and comfort which is something that everyone needs once in a while. I have come to realize that the act of sharing your problems and “coming clean” often feel immensely good, almost as if a heavy load has been lifted off your chest. More often than not, what we are seeking is just a channel for us to expel our negativity and someone to sit by and comfort us. Knowing that we have somebody to turn to will definitely help us in overcoming our problems and to motivate us to keep going. Do try this if you are feeling stressed or worried and rest assure your best friend would never judge you!
3. Take a time-out!
Last but not least, if all else fails and you find yourself on the brink of a meltdown, take a time-out, and just rest. We all had that one day where we are simply over-stretched and craving for an escape. Well, give yourself the chance to slow down and take things easy by taking a break! Go for a walk to clear your thoughts, buy yourself a nice meal or just lie down and take a rest. Maybe your body just needs a nice break from your hectic work schedule. This is one of my favourite methods as it involves very little cost but yet produces amazing results. I would wake up feeling energized and refreshed. Not only will my body feel fresh and good, my mind is a lot clearer and with that I am able to come up with better solutions and avoid that terrible feeling of drowning in endless worry and misery. Sometimes, the best remedy for stress is to simply take a break as one will say, “At the end of the day, the day will end, so just go to sleep!”
Written by: Kelly
Kelly is currently a business student who is interested to learn more about mental health and explore issues related to psychology and counselling. She hopes to be able to spread happiness to those around her and to help raise awareness on mental health through her writings and personal experiences.