Learn to live like an optimist to put the feel good factor back into your world

Learn to live like an optimist by seeing opportunity instead of obstacles. News of conflicts around the world and tough times lingering at home make it easy to feel negative. But instead of letting your mind fixate on the doom and gloom of life, treat every day as a fresh start filled with new opportunities. Tune into the spirit of hope and optimism to transform your life.

What is Optimism?

Optimism is a lifestyle choice. You decide whether to see hope or to see hindrances. But optimism is not simply about 'looking on the bright side’; it's about believing that you can change your life for the better, then making those changes. In the dictionary, optimism is defined as being 'full of hope and expecting a positive outcome'. It is the ultimate 'people power' emotion because it's about taking back your personal power from negative niggles and worries that eat away at your thoughts, draining your time and energy. An optimistic outlook really can heal your world by freeing your mind from cycles of worry and helping you to see the positive possibilities more clearly.

Scientific studies are providing evidence of the benefits of optimism. Three recent studies found the following:

*Positive people live longer, say scientists from Illinois University
*Thinking positive lowers your stress levels, according to researchers at The Mayo Clinic
*Positivity boosts your immune system, says a study from Kentucky University

How to be an optimist

Here are five simple steps to creating a more positive outlook in your life.

Open your mind
Optimists are always open to new experiences and new people because they see opportunities rather than obstacles. Change your routine to shake up your life and increase the chance of you crossing paths with new people and new inspiration. Trying something new may spark fresh ideas and new opportunities. This could be reading a new genre of fiction, trying a new recipe, learning something new, or trying a new career path.

Let go of fear
Dwelling on a problem - turning it over and over in your mind is very damaging. It creates a climate of fear within you that can be difficult to break free from and it makes the original worry seem much bigger that it actually is. It takes a big effort but when you find yourself doing this, take a mental step back and pause.
*Write down your problem in a few sentences, fold up the paper and put it in a drawer. Set aside ten minutes to half an hour to think about solutions to the issue and don't let it enter your mind at any other time. Although it's a difficult trick to master at first, this will make your thoughts much clearer and more generally optimistic, with practice.

Be honest
Be yourself; don't try to be who others expect you to be.
*Don't place too many expectations upon a situation or person because if everything doesn't go exactly to plan, you'll feel disappointed. Instead, try to go with the flow and let situations develop naturally.

Have gratitude
Optimistic people always count their blessings rather than gripe over what they don't have. Spend five minutes each morning thinking about the good things in your life to start the day on an optimistic note.

Optimism attracts optimism
If you are an optimistic person you will attract positivity from others. The Law of Attraction theorises that like attracts like. So if you expect things to turn out for the best, they usually will. Remember, no matter how dark a situation seems now, it will pass and life will regain its brightness for you.

Spread the love
You can heal the world from your armchair! Use this powerful visualisation to spread healing, positivity and optimism to people and places.Sit in a safe comfortable place with your feet flat on the ground.

  • Place your hands on your lap or on the arm-rests of your chair with your palms facing upwards.
  • Think of the place or person you want to send positivity to - this could be a country, a family on your street, a person you dislike or a person you love.
  • Visualise your person or place in your mind's eye. Hold the image in your mind until it becomes strong and clear.
  • Imagine a powerful light flowing from the palms of your hands. This light is the love or positivity that you want to send out. Imagine the light in the colour of your choice - it could be pure white, pale pink, gold, silver, blue or whatever colour you feel is right.
  • See this light flowing around the person or place in your mind's eye. Feel it spreading over the person or place and healing as it flows. Really focus on sending out this healing.
  • Repeat the word 'healing', 'love' or 'bright future' in your mind as you are doing this.
  • Finish after a couple of minutes or as long as feels comfortable. Imagine yourself being washed in a crystal clear light to remove any residual energy.

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