4 Strategies for Creating Positive Thinking

Upbringing and genetics are key factors in shaping your mental health. Some people manage to overcome the stresses of life, while others find that stress starts to grate at them until eventually they develop serious mental health problems.

It takes a lot of work to overcome stress and improve your mental health. You'll need therapy, you'll need lifestyle changes – you'll need to drastically change who you are and how you respond to various situations. But above all else, you need to have a positive mindset.

That's because negative thinking breeds an attitude that often validates the way you feel. For example, if you feel stressed and anxious, and you see the world through negative lenses, then the world looks like a more dangerous and uninviting place, which creates more stress and anxiety.

Learning to Think Positively

Creating a positive mindset is a crucial tool for coping with stress and overcoming any mental health issues you have. Creating that mindset though isn't easy – your entire life has given you the mindset you have, and only by committing to changing it can you hope to turn negativity into positivity. Here are several tools that you can commit to in order to create a positive mindset.

1. False Positivity – Your first step, and one that you should start today, is to simply pretend to be positive. Every day, act like a person that is a positive thinker, even if it doesn't come naturally. Doing so will let you practice what positivity feels like and acts like so it will become more natural. In addition, there is evidence that when you pretend to act a certain way, your mind tries to compensate by changing the way you think to match your actions.

2. Positive Journaling – When you view the world through a negative lens, it's easy to start to see negative things while ignoring the positives. You need to re-train yourself to see positive things around you and experience positivity during the day. The best way to do this is with positivity journaling. Every night you sit down and write out 10 to 20 specific, positive things that happened during the day. You make it a goal to do this every night, until eventually during the day you start to notice positive things that you can then write in your journal.

3. Surrounding Yourself With Positivity – You'll also need to change what you do and who you spend time with. Both positivity and negativity are affected by what's around you. If you hang out with negative people, go to negative places, and do negative things, you're going to feel more negative. You may have to change who you spend time with and what you do together, but it's important for creating positivity.

4. Exercise and Stay Active – Finally make sure that you're still outdoors and remaining as active as possible. There is a connection between the mind and body. If your body has too much excess energy, you're going to feel negative and downtrodden. If your body is healthy and energized, you're going to feel more positive.

Positivity really is something you can create. Life may have caused you to feel cynical or negative, but if you're willing to commit to changing your mindset it really can be changed. Positivity isn't going to cure anxiety, stress, or other mental health issues on its own, but it will go a long way towards making sure that the changes you make to your life and the help you seek out become far more likely to affect you, so that you can eventually live a higher quality of life.