The most important decision we can make it so choose faith instead of fear. All of our negativity is rooted in fear. Complaining, anger, jealousy, and sadness are ultimately caused by fear that expresses itself in negative ways. Fear of the unknown causes us to protect the status quo when change would be beneficial for us. Fear of being powerless causes us to complain. Fear of failing leads to inaction. Fear of being hurt leads to anger. Fear of not being good, successful, or smart enough leads to jealousy. Fear of not being loved leads to sadness. Fear holds us back from living the life we were born to live. It paralyzes us from taking positive actions.
Faith and fear both believe in a future that hasn’t happened yet. Fear believes in a negative future. Faith believes in a positive future.
Faith helps you overcome the feat that sabotages your joy and success. It helps you get through tough times when you want to give up. Faith fills you up with hope, optimism, and inspiration. Telling yourself a story of faith changes you from a victim to a hero, and your belief in a positive future leads to powerful actions today. Because you believe in yourself and the future, you take the actions necessary to create it. Best of all, faith helps you turn challenges into opportunities.
We will all face challenges in our lives. But we have a choice. We can allow these challenges to destroy us or they can make us stronger—and it is our perspective that decides the outcome. We can choose to see adversity as just a challenge or as an opportunity that helps us learn, improve and grow. (See more about this and the growth mindset in “Mindset”)
Feeling the positive dog was most powerful when he focused on the present moment. (Meditation is a powerful tool for being able to improve your ability to focus on the present moment, read more in “10% Happier”)
Doing something you enjoy and being in the present moment are big positivity boosters—as are meditation and prayer. In fact research shows that meditation and prayer reduce stress, boost positivity, and enhance health, vitality, and longevity.
When you are positive, you not only make yourself better, you make everyone around you better.
Everyone intuitively knows these things, but because of the daily grind of life and the stress and challenges we face, we forget the simple things we know. We forget that simple is powerful. We forget the powerful impact of a simple smile. We forget the transformative effect our laughter has on others. We forget the influence our positivity has on the world. That’s why you need to remember that your positivity not only changes the way you feel, but also impacts how others feel.
We all want to give and receive love, but many of us are scared to give it because we are afraid of getting hurt.
When you share love, it comes back to you.
With so many people and dogs in the world telling us we can’t succeed, we need to hear from those who tell us we can. There are enough pessimists and realists in the world. The world doesn’t need more negativity and impossible thinkers. The world needs more optimists, encouragers, and inspirers. (The mindset of civilizations like China, where the future is bleak and uncertain, is one reason thinking big positive thoughts is a sure-fire recipe for success in an uncertain future. “Zero to One” explains this concept much more eloquently.)
The world needs you to speak into the hearts of others and say, I believe in you. If you have the desire then you also have the power to make it happen. Keep working hard. You’re improving and getting better. Keep it up. Great things are coming your way. We’ve hit a lot of obstacles but we’ll overcome. Even if you fail, it will lead to something even better. You’re learning and growing.
The difference between success and failure is belief, and this is often instilled in us by someone who encourages us.
Negativity does serve a purpose; it helps you see the positive in the world, just as the darkness allows you to see the starts. If you didn’t have negative experiences, you would never be able to appreciate the positive ones. If you were never sad, you wouldn’t know what it felt like to be happy. If you never felt fear, you wouldn’t know what faith felt like. If you were positive all the time, then you wouldn’t even know you were being positive because there would be no contrast. You would feel the same all the time.
Negativity actually helps you see and appreciate the positive. Negativity forces you to feel those painful emotions so you can recognize and appreciate positive emotions. Negativity builds character and strength when we persevere and overcome it.
An 11-Day Process to Positivity:
Day One: Take a Thank-You Walk: research shows you can’t be stressed and thankful at the same time so when you combine gratitude with physical exercise, you give yourself a double boost of positive energy.
Day Two: A Day of Gratitude
Day Three: More Smiles and Laughter
Day Four: Celebrate your Success of the Day: if you go to bed thinking and feeling like a champion, you’ll wake up thinking and feeling like a champion—optimistic and ready to win.
Day Five: Spend Time with Positive People: the more friends you have the happier you are. Other studies show that close relationships promote health, support longevity, and enhance positivity.
Day Eleven: Be a Coach: instead of complaining about what others are doing wrong, start focusing on what they are doing right. Praise them, encourage them, love them, recognize them, and inspire them to be their best. You’ll help others feel great and you’ll feel great too.
Every Day: Pray:
How to Starve the Negative Dog:
Turn off the news.
Don’t participate in gossip.
Turn complaints into solutions.
Identify the negative stories you tell yourself and replace them with positive stories.
Replace fear with faith.
See negative people as teachers who help you become more positive.
The Positive Pledge (read the pledge, choose to be positive, and make a positive impact on the world.)
I pledge to be a positive person and a positive influence on others.
I promise to be positively contagious and share more smiles, laughter, encouragement, and joy with those around me.
I vow to stay positive in the face of negativity.
When I am surrounded by pessimism, I will choose optimism.
When I feel fear, I will choose faith.
When I want to hate, I will choose love.
When I want to be bitter, I will choose to get better.
When I experience a challenge, I will look for opportunity to learn and grow.
when faced with adversity, I will find strength.
When I experience a set-back, I will be resilient.
When I meet failure, I will fail forward toward future success.
With vision, hope, and faith, I will never give us and will always move forward toward my destiny.
I believe my best days are ahead of me, not behind me.
I believe I’m here for a reason and my purpose is greater than my challenges.
I believe that being positive not only make me better, it makes everyone around me better.
So today and every day I will be positive and strive to make a positive impact on the world.