Many of us are told from a very young age to “think positive” if we want good things to happen to us. But most people don’t take this sentiment of positive thinking as a literal suggestion. Positive thinking has become something of a clich misnomer; that is to say, it is seen more as just a way to make yourself feel better if you become sad or depressed. It is easy to assume that people who purposely think positive thoughts are just delusional daydreamers who have simply made a choice to view the world through rose-colored glasses. They are fearful of acknowledging the negative things in life so they overcompensate by psychotically emphasizing the positive things.
Postive Thinking SignBut positive thinking is not misguided and overzealous optimism as many believe it to be. It is a state of mind that perpetuates positivity in the life of the person thinking the positive thoughts. Some experts in the field of human psychology and behavioral science have described likened positive thinking to what has become known as an explanatory style. The theory behind an explanatory style is involves how a person views a particular situation or event. It is his or her explanation of why something happened. That something can be either good or bad but a person’s explanatory style is truly uncovered through experiences and events that most people would deem negative.
SO WHAT ARE THE EFFECTS OF ADOPTING A POSITIVE MINDSET? WHAT BENEFITS CAN BE DERIVED FROM ALWAYS SEEING THE GLASS AS HALF-FULL?
Positive Thinkers Handle Stress Better –
Stressful situations are a part of life no matter who you are or how much money you have. Stress may be relative but it affects everyone. People who have an optimistic mindset, however, tend to cope much more effectively with stressful situations than those with a pessimistic mindset. When faced with a disappointing event such as the loss of a job or the diagnosis of a potentially terminal illness, positive thinkers search for a way to resolve the situation or to turn the negative into a positive. They believe that something good can come of any situation no matter how dire whereas pessimists simply focus all of their thoughts on the negative situation as it is which amplifies their stress level.
Positive Thinkers Have Stronger Immune Systems –
Over the last few decades, behavioral researchers have conducted studies to learn about the connection between the mind and the physical body. In layman’s terms, several of these studies found that those individuals who exercised consistent positive thinking over a specific period of time showed a far stronger immune response to a flu vaccine than those who exercised negative thinking during the same period.
Positive Thinkers Are More Resilient –
People who consistently think positive thoughts seem to embody the old adage that whatever doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. Unlike pessimistic thinkers, optimists embrace stressful or traumatic situations and events and are able to overcome them much more quickly. Additionally, many report that they are retrospectively thankful for having been faced with the stressful situation because they believe it has improved and strengthened them as a person.
Positive thinking is not disconnecting from reality in order to make oneself feel better about negative situations. Rather it is a positive belief in one’s own abilities to overcome stress and traumatic events and the psychological effects of such a belief system have proven extremely beneficial to the overall health and well-being of those who implement it into their paradigm.