Positive thinking seems useful. We all want to be happy, so it would be logical that positive thinking is a good idea. But is there also science that underpins that?
For example, are happy people more successful? Or should you be successful to be happy?What comes first? And what about negative thinking: are there disadvantages attached to it? And above all: what can you do about it? Are there ways to become a happier and healthier person, both physically and mentally?
One of the people who is doing research is Barbara Fredrickson, a research star in positive psychology at the University of North Carolina.What does she say?
What negative thoughts do with your brain
Suppose you walk through the jungle and suddenly a tiger jumps on the path for you.
Your brain will then register a negative emotion 芒 鈧?”in this case fear 芒 鈧?.
And then you hit the flight. The rest of the world does not matter: you are fully focused on the tiger and the fear and how you can wegraken. In other words: negative emotions narrow your mind and focus your thoughts.At the same time you can also climb into a tree or take a stick. But your brain ignores all of those options because they don’t seem relevant when a tiger is right in front of your nose. So this is a useful instinct if you want to save your body and members.
But in our modern society , we should not worry much about meeting tigers in the wilderness.The problem is that your brain is still programmed to respond to negative emotions in the same way: by excluding the rest of the world and limiting the options you see around you.
For example, when you argue with someone, your anger and other emotions will make you think of nothing else.Or when you are extremely stressed about everything you need to get done today, you may find it difficult to really start because you are paralyzed by the length of your to-do list. Or if you feel bad about the fact that you are not doing sports or not eating healthily, then you may just think about how little willpower you have and how lazy and unmotivated you are. Each time your brain shuts you off from the outside world and focuses on the negative emotions of fear, anger and stress. Just like it did at the Tiger.
Negative emotions ensure that your brain does not see other options and choices in your life. Let us compare that to what positive emotions do with your brain.
What positive thoughts do with your brain
In an experiment, Barbara Fredrickson divided her participants into five groups and showed each group a different video clip.
The first two groups were given clips that created positive emotions. Group 1 saw images that spake feelings of joy and group 2 saw images that called feelings of contentment. Group 3 was the control group: they saw neutral images that did not evot significant emotion. The last two groups resulted in images with negative emotions. Group 4 saw images that evoke feelings of fear and group 5 saw images that called feelings of anger.
Afterwards, each participant was asked to imagine a situation where a similar feeling was encountered, and to write down what they would do.Each participant received a sheet of paper with 20 lines that started with the phrase 芒 鈧?虄I would willing芒 鈧?娄芒 鈧劉 participants who saw images of fear and anger wrote the least answers and came up with the lowest number of possible answers.The participants who saw images of joy and contentment wrote many more possible actions they could take.
In other words , when you experience positive emotions such as joy, contentment and love, you will see more opportunities in your life and your mind opens up for more options. But that was just the beginning.
How you develop your skills through positive thinking
The benefits of positive emotions do not stop after a few minutes.In fact, the greatest benefit of positive emotions is that you develop heightened skills that you can use further in your life. A child who plays outside, hangs on branches and ravot with friends, develops the skill to move athletically, to communicate with others and to explore the world around itself. The positive emotion of the game and the fun can therefore be used to develop skills that are useful and valuable in everyday life. These skills last much longer than the emotions that lie at the beginning.
If positive thinking is so useful for developing valuable skills, how can you get more of it in your life?
How do you increase happiness in your life?
What can you do to make positive emotions grow and benefit?Everything that evokes feelings of joy, contentment and love in You is good. You know all the things that work for you. Maybe it’s playing on a musical instrument, or spending time with a certain person.
There are three scientifically substantiated ideas to consider.
Recent research has found that people who meditate for only 10 minutes daily show more positive emotions than people who do not.
These people show an increased level of mindfulness, of purposefulness or sense of purpose in their lives, and also exhibit less disease symptoms.
Here too, research indicates that people who write their positive experiences on a daily basis feel better and less sick.
Provide time to play in your life.You do schedule weekly meetings; Why not put a time to play 芒 鈧劉 in your diary? Time to explore, experiment and have fun? Being happy is at least as important as your weekly meeting on Tuesday? Give yourself permission to laugh, and enjoy the benefits of positive emotions.
Happiness versus success: What comes first?
Happiness is the prerequisite for success and also its outcome. This way you can get into an upward spiral: happy people develop new skills, which lead to new success, and that leads to more happiness.And so the process repeats itself again.
Tip: find ways to develop happiness and positive emotions in your life.Whether it is by meditating, writing or playing or something else. Your brain does the rest!
Yoram and Jeroen, twin brothers, didn’t have much at home.
They grew up in a poor working-class family.
They weren’t very stimulated, because attention for school was barely there.
Homework was also not considered important at home.
It was more valuable to learn how to use the hands as quickly as possible.
After being sent back from school, they ended up in the only school that still wanted to accept them.
In the middle of the school year they were in group 7 with Mrs De Witt in the classroom.
Mrs De Witt was different from other teachers.
Mrs De Witt never ruled,
And did not punish the pupils if they made mistakes.
She taught the children that making mistakes was necessary to get better, to move forward, to achieve your goal.
She taught the children that everything was within reach,
If you dared to make mistakes,
Had the right focus,
and prepared to work hard for it.
This was straight to what Yoram and Jeroen heard at home,
This was different from how Yoram and Jeroen were treated at other schools.
The beginning was hesitating,
But Yoram and Jeroen, less anxious now to make mistakes,
Soon became more active in the lesson,
became more curious,
Own-initiative reading books,
and started asking questions in the lesson.
Now that they had focused attention, understanding the learning material was less tricky than they thought.
At the end of the school year, their report figures that they themselves did not allow for what had a major impact on their self-confidence,
Everything was within easy reach they realised.
Both Yoram and Jeroen would flow to higher education,
Something in the family has not yet occurred.
Both were given leadership positions and are now looking back on a great career,
Something that no one had taken into account.
This is illustrating what positive thinking can do in a lifetime.
Positive thinking changed me life.When I realized that I could change my thoughts, a door opened to me.
I became a happier man.I didn’t let the mind of others determine my day. I picked up old hobbies again, I could concentrate better. Although I still have bad days, the good days dominate my general mood.
This saying I always have in mind and helps me to stay positive:
‘ How you look at the situation is how you feel.This is not the actual situation. ‘
This I see back in so many situations.This often soothes myself when I have a lot of stress.
I would say, try to force yourself to think a day positive and say no to the negative thoughts.Just for a day. You’ll see that it’s impacted your life already.
It gives you more resilience, opens your eyes to possibilities, gives you more perseverance.All things that help you achieve your goal.