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    3 Powerful Ways to Stay Positive this New Year

    Goals & the New Year

    …Goals, goals, goals! We all make them as we enter into a New Year.  This year, I thought very carefully about what is important to me and what is achievable, and then wrote it down with an actionable plan to help me achieve my goals. I also made the mental commitment to be flexible because life happens and maintaining an attitude of positivity is key to anyone’s mental well-being and health.

    With that said, it is so easy to fall back into old habits, find excuses, or be bogged down by the negativity that can come from a friend, family, colleague, or even social media! I guess, “having a positive mental attitude is asking how something can be done rather than saying it can’t be done” – Bo Bennett

    I’ve listed below a few ways to stay positive and effective in the New Year.

    Staying Positive This New Year

    “It makes a big difference in your life when you stay positive” – Ellen Degeneres

    “STAYING POSITIVE does not mean that things will turn out okay. Rather it is knowing that YOU will be okay no matter how things turn out” – Unknown

    “You cannot change reality, but you can control the manner in which you look at things. Your attitude is under your own control. Weed out the negative and focus on the positive” – Helen Steiner Rice

    These are just a few of my favorite positive quotes that I love reading every once in a while because it reminds me to improve my outlook on life and build a more optimistic attitude. Without further ado, here are the 3 powerful ways to stay positive in the New Year.

    1. Finding the optimistic viewpoint in any negative situation: This is usually easier said than done but in my experience there are two kinds of people, the ones who see the glass as half-full and the other that see the glass as half-empty.  I have always been the kind of person that isn’t too phased with a setback or negative situation. I use this as a way to reflect. My thinking is more along the lines of “how do I learn from this experience and look on the positive side of what I can do”.
    2. Cultivating positivity and weeding out the negatives: The older I have gotten, I have become more particular on who I choose to spend my time with and what sources I get input from. I am very careful with my time these days since I also want to maximize my free time with my family. It is hard to find the motivation to focus on the positive when positivity seems like nothing more than wishful thinking. My advice, surround yourself with people that support you and lift you up instead of dragging you down. You are in control of your life and you must be intentional about staying positive if you are going to overcome the brain’s tendency to focus on the negatives.
    3. Don’t let doubts hold you back from achieving your dreams or goals. Cultivate gratitude: Stay steadfast in believing that every step forward is a step toward achieving something bigger and better than your current situation. Also remember that in all you do, you should add value in someone’s life. I’m a believer in karma and the practice of gratitude. It is important that when you are doing a good deed it is for the right reasons and you are also making a conscious effort to cultivate an attitude of gratitude to improve your mood and energy.

    In a nutshell, to stay positive is to start your day in a positive way and that means starting your morning right, incorporating a healthy lifestyle and mindfully moving through your day. These may sound fundamental but breaking old habits in the new year and training your brain to have a positive outlook will eventually become a way of life.

    What other ways are you planning to stay positive in the New Year? I would love to hear about it. xoxo Louise

    How to Live a More Positive Life

    One of the best gifts anyone can give themselves is to have a more positive mindset and outlook on life. I am usually a pretty optimistic person but no one is perfect and it takes a lot of self-will to weed through the negativity that can sometimes come your way. It’s called life and I’ve learned a few things along the way that I’m sharing on the blog today.

    Practice Positivity

    The art of practice is the performance of an activity or skill so as to acquire or maintain proficiency in it. This is very similar with the practice of positivity when it comes to your outlook on life. I know we all perceive things differently but the way we interpret it can influence the way we feel about a particular situation.

    Some of the key things I’ve learned is to have quiet time each morning.  There is something so serene about getting up in the silence of morning and finding time for you.  Whether it is through the practice of yoga or meditation or reading the bible, I find that quiet time special in helping level set my day. It grounds me and makes me look at the day through a different set of lens.

    I’ve also found that diet and a healthy lifestyle can help.  There will always be challenges, negativity, and difficult situations that may come your way but when you have a sense of inner calm and a healthy lifestyle, it is easier to let go of the negativity a lot faster and this will do wonders for your overall well-being and life.

    Smile More Often

    A smile can lift a bad mood.  There’s a saying that “nothing you wear is more important than your smile”.  It influences your behavior and in turn can be contagious to those around you.

    Scientists have found that smiling on purpose can shift you into a better mood and help you feel better. Just the simple act of putting a smile on your face can lead you to feel joy, amusement, or happiness.  Supposedly, smiling on purpose changes brain chemistry. Since I’m more apt to being optimistic and happy by nature, a smile comes a lot more easily to me. For many, the trick to making a smile work for you is to smile until you feel it. You’ll be surprised the many benefits you’ll gain from a simple act like smiling. It will help your body deal with stressful situations more effectively and improve your mood, as well as increase positive thoughts.

    So the next time you find yourself feeling blue, crack a smile.

    Control the Amount of Negativity

    While I want to stay up on the events occurring in the world, sometimes a headline is sufficient to grasp new developments so I usually limit the time I spend with TV or radio, selecting only a few stories to read in full. Yes, you can be selective.  Over the years, I’ve also learned to select how much time I spend with relatives and friends that dwell on the negative. As painful as it may be at times, my calendar may not always open to those who consistently drag me down. Instead I try to spend more time with people who’re uplifting and honest. By making this choice, I tend to live consciously with a feeling of gratitude for the moment that overcomes forces that can drag me down.

    I’ve also learned that gratitude and the practice of gratitude goes a long way on how to live a more positive life.  So the next time you feel stressed,  overwhelmed or you’re in a negative situation; remember to smile, practice positivity, and filter what you want coming through to you. I hope you’ll share how you stay positive in the comments below.

    Credits: Photography by Mallory Kee   Dress by louise millen    Crossbody bag by Kate Spade