In these unprecedented times, we seem to have many reasons to feel uncertain, anxious, and worried about our health, employability, and financial stability. Is it possible to have faith and believe things will get better when they appear to get worst? The answer is yes and I want to explain why.
Optimism is a mental attitude reflecting a belief or hope that the outcome of some specific endeavor, will be positive, favorable, and desirable. Dr. David Walton in his book Emotional Intelligence refers that optimists adapt better when facing negative life events. They experience better recovery rates from illnesses and lower rates of depression and anxiety.
Suzanne Segerstrom, Ph.D., a professor of psychology at the University of Kentucky says that having a cheery disposition can influence more than just your mood. “Optimistic People are more committed to their goals, are more resourceful, and more satisfied with their lives. They also have better mental and physical health when compared to more pessimistic people”.
Neuroscience is providing evidence about the malleability of the brain. If you tend to be pessimist, you can start shifting toward a more positive mental framework. Here are three suggestions:
- Gaining New Perspectives. Challenge your pessimistic thinking when confronted with a threat or a difficult situation. Ask yourself: What Evidence is there for your negative thoughts? Is your pessimistic thinking related to past events? Have things changed now? Is it possible to see the good in the situation? Write your answers and read them when you are feeling calmer. You might discover new possibilities.
- Having More Faith in Your Future. See setbacks as temporary situations that need addressing. If you are facing difficulties, know this shall pass and you will be stronger, more resilient, and wiser if you seek to resolve them.
- Committing to Your Goals. Becoming more persistent means to stay in the game despite the obstacles you are facing. In my own life, I had stayed committed to my dreams despite adversities.
Can you remember a time in your life when you were facing hardship and you were able to overcome it? I know that you will find a way as you did it in the past.
Becoming more optimistic will help you cope with difficult situations, recover faster from setbacks, stay healthier, and achieve goals despite barriers and difficulties. It pays off to be more optimistic by learning to see the bright side of your life experiences and experiencing gratitude for your personal journey.