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Cultivating a habit of positivity

I'll start by saying that this past month has been challenging for me. I let my negative mind chatter get the best of me and needless to say the world around me began to crumble. My meditation practice fell through the cracks and I found myself yelling, screaming and crying about all the chaos that was unfolding in my life.

Once the dust started to settle I can see now where and why I let my fears and negative mind take over. I was reminded that the brain is a powerful weapon. It can work for you or against you. However, my years of meditation reminded me I am in control of my mind and at any given moment I can choose my path.

I sometimes preach more than I practice but this past month has really taught me a lesson. The lesson is that life is a game. The game teaches us that we are constantly at war with the world around us. In actuality we are at war with ourselves. I learned that if I let my fears take over nothing but chaos ensues. I had to really work hard at times to keep my brain thinking positive thoughts. I tried listening to positive music, write positive mantras on my mirror and even took long deep breaths when a negative thought came up.

Does this work you ask? HELL YES it does! AND once you practice positive thinking just like that life and the circumstances that seemed to fall apart begin to change. I laugh now about all my chaotic episodes because once I got back to natural rhythm of over riding my negative thoughts articles like the one I'm going to share start to appear in my life.

These little nuggets are a reminder, a sign that the universe is listening, your consciousness is listening and more importantly I have infiltrated the Matrix!!!! Like Neo I am not going to let the negative programs take over my life! ~Shelly

Read, take it in and break through the negative programming!

Resource: Tapping Solution/ Nick Ortner

80% of our daily thoughts are negative Did you know that the average person has 12,000-60,000 thoughts per day, that 80% of those are negative, and that 95% are repetitive? As humans, we really gravitate to the negative in terms of how we think! Our brains are simply wired that way; it’s something that psychologists refer to as the negativity bias. The negativity bias plays a HUGE role in our lives. It’s why we can’t stop thinking about that one piece of critical feedback we got from our boss, even though it was surrounded by lavish praise about how well we have been doing. Or why we get upset over the one car that cuts us off on the way home, forgetting about the hundreds of others who were kind and courteous.

Neuroscientist Dr. Rick Hanson offers some helpful metaphors to illustrate the negativity bias. He explains: In effect, the brain is like Velcro for negative experiences but Teflon for positive ones.” And, “Most positive experiences flow through the brain like water through a sieve, while negative ones are caught every time. And for all the visual learners out there, this video from the University of California offers a great explanation of the negativity bias.

If you feel like being positive and optimistic doesn’t come naturally to you, it’s time to give yourself a break… It doesn’t come naturally to anyone! Our brains have a hard-wired tendency to downplay the good and focus on the bad. But why is that?


Is there a tiger in the bushes? The evolutionary origins of the negativity bias In this blog post, Dr. Rick Hanson explains the ancient origins of this bias toward negativity:

Basically, in evolution, there are two kinds of mistakes: (1) You think there is a tiger in the bushes but there isn’t one, and (2) You think the coast is clear, no tiger in the bushes, but there really is one about to pounce. These mistakes have very different consequences. The first one will make you anxious, but the second one will kill you. That’s why Mother Nature wants you to make the first mistake a thousand times over in order to avoid making the second mistake even once. This hard-wired tendency toward fear affects individuals, groups (from couples to multinational corporations), and nations. It makes them overestimate threats, underestimate opportunities, and underestimated resources.

I don’t know about you, but I’m not running into many tigers in the bushes in my modern-day existence. Nonetheless, the negativity bias is still going strong! It’s a remnant of survival mode that just isn’t as necessary in the modern world. But here’s the thing: just because the negativity bias is our default setting, that doesn’t mean we can’t override it. We simply have to consciously develop new habits and patterns to bring in more positivity to our lives! And doing so is actually something to take quite seriously – as a positive and optimistic mindset has been linked to several important benefits across many areas of life.


Looking on the bright side can improve relationships, boost your bank account, and maybe even increase your lifespan! There is some fascinating research on positivity and optimism out there. Studies show that people who are more optimistic and see things in a more positive light tend to have:

  • Better physical health

  • Boosted immune function

  • More success in their careers (making more money, having a higher chance of being promoted, etc.)

  • Healthier financial habits

  • Greater relationship satisfaction

  • Decreased risk of mortality (from multiple causes like stroke, infection, cancer, and more) [1,2,3,4,5]

One fascinating study found that the top 25% most optimistic participants were likely to live a 5.4% longer lifespan, and have a 10% greater likelihood of living past 90, than the least optimistic participants. [6] Pretty amazing, right? All of those benefits could be yours, just from cultivating an optimistic mindset!


Override your brain’s negativity filter by intentionally catching more of the good We always have a choice of how we look at something, and step by step, we can train ourselves to see the world and our lives through a lens rooted in a deeper sense of optimism. Here are some practical tips to help get you started with a habit of positivity:

  1. Celebrate your wins and acknowledge your progress. Bring an intentional awareness to the wins, the successes, the things going well, the beautiful moments of growth and progress, and the times you feel proud. Track ‘em, log ‘em, help yourself to notice ‘em!

  2. Practice gratitude. Take time out of each day to notice the good in your life, and all the big and little blessings around you that you have to be grateful for.

  3. Share appreciations with others. Look for opportunities to notice the good that others are doing around you and express your gratitude to them (give extra thanks to your server at the restaurant, reach out to a coworker who’s been helping you out on a project, etc.).

  4. Savor positive experiences. When you find yourself in a moment of peace, joy, or pleasure, draw the experience out as much as possible. Tune in and slow down so that you can really take it in and ground yourself in the moment.

  5. Practice expecting good (instead of assuming the worst). When you find yourself falling into worst-case scenario thinking, try counteracting the catastrophizing with assuming the best. How could the situation turn out even better than you expected? How many different amazing possibilities could be ahead of you?

  6. Try The Daily Inspiration. Start your day with a positive pick-me-up to motivate, inspire, and fill yourself with hope by heading to The Tapping Solution App and listening to our daily series of short audios titled, “The Daily Inspiration.”


Positive Words to Live By

“Some people grumble that roses have thorns; I am grateful that thorns have roses.”

- Alphonse Karr

“Optimism is a strategy for making a better future. Because unless you believe that the future can be better, it's unlikely you will step up and take responsibility for making it so. If you assume that there's no hope, you guarantee that there will be no hope.”

- Noam Chomsky

“When every day seems the same, it is because we have stopped noticing the good things that appear in our lives.”

- Paulo Coelho


Affirmations for approaching the day with a positive mindset

I am grateful for the gift of this day. Today, I choose to notice and savor the good that is all around me. I open myself up to positive possibilities, and unexpected surprises. I choose to feel optimistic for the rest of my day. I’m ready to meet this day with a positive attitude.

And if you take just one thing away from today… … let it be this: There’s nothing wrong with you if you have a hard time being positive or optimistic. When you focus on the negative, your brain is simply doing what it has learned it is supposed to do to stay safe. And at the same time, positivity is a habit that you can cultivate if you put in the effort! So, I’ll leave you with this moment of reflection: How will you choose to cultivate a habit of positivity today? What will you do to intentionally acknowledging the good things in your life, instead of letting them flow through the sieve of your brain unnoticed? Cheers to savoring the positive today.

I hope you have a good one!

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