Positivity is a funny thing. A lot of people think it’s something you need to be born with, but there are ways to train your brain to think more positively and achieve a positive mindset.
If you’re looking to ramp up your running and fitness in 2019, you may be feeling excited (yay!) or a little bit daunted by the journey ahead.
Achieving your goals – however small – all starts with a positive mindset. Once you have this in check, you can take on the world!
Believe it or not, there are ways to train your brain to think more positively.
Over the last few years, I’ve learnt tools and techniques to help with this.
I remember the days of negative self-talk, pessimistic thinking and self-doubt very well – I would let anxiety and negative thoughts control and cloud my mind.
But there are times when you just have to tell yourself enough is enough!
The tools and techniques in this blog post don’t work overnight, but if you practice them regularly you really will start to see the results.
Focus on the good things, however small
There’s no such thing as a perfect day.
You’re bound to encounter challenges and obstacles along the way. Instead of dwelling on the negatives, think about what you’ve gained instead.
For example, if you miss the next train, think about the extra time you have to listen to your favourite music or podcast.
Or if you get injured and can’t go for a run, think about all the other exercises that you can try to help with rest and recovery like swimming and yoga.
It’s always good to try new things to push your body in different ways.
No one is perfect.
Everyone makes mistakes and experience failure many times in their lives.
Failure is the best way to learn from your mistakes and grow as an individual.
Some of the best lessons come from failing.
Don’t let failure or the thought of failing stop you from doing new things and pushing yourself out of your comfort zone – whether that be at work or in your personal life.
See everything as a new opportunity to learn lessons, grow and move on to become a stronger person.
Practice positive affirmation
In order to embrace failure, being able to practice positive affirmation is a good way to help you on this journey.
Positive affirmation is all about replacing negative messages with positive and self-motivating talk.
Negative self talk can easily take over your brain – “I can’t do this”, “I’m bad at this”, “I’m not good enough”.
The more you think like this, the more your brain starts to believe it. Next thing you know you’ve cemented these thoughts in your mind and it’s hard to get out of this negative cycle.
Practice positive affirmation on a daily basis, as soon as you get out of bed.
If you’re building up to a big event like an interview, a big presentation at work or a large training run, transform any negative thoughts into positive thinking – “I can do this”, “I’m no so great at this but I will learn how to do it”, “I am good enough”.
You’ll be surprised at how quickly your brain starts to pick up on this positive talk which then affects your mindset for the better.
Find positive friends and co-workers
You are the sum of your five closest friends and acquaintances, so surround yourself with positive people at work and in your personal life to benefit from their positive outlook, attitude and words.
They will soon sink in and will affect your own thoughts and mindset for the better.
Ditch any friends that don’t make you feel your best, and remove yourself from negative situations that could poison your mindset.
This applies for all things you consume in your daily life too, such as books, films and social media.
Unfollow anyone on social media who makes you feel crap about yourself; read books that allow you to learn new things; watch videos that enable you to learn a new skill.
These are all great ways to achieve a more positive mindset.
Focus on the present
Most sources of negativity stem from a memory of a recent event or the exaggerated imagination of a potential future event.
Stay in the present to help combat these thoughts. Dwelling on things that have already happened or may happen in the near future is useless – it’s almost always not as bad as you imagine.
If you catch yourself overthinking a situation, focus your mind on something else.
My favourite thing, of course, is to go for a run or do a quick workout to help me get back on track and think more clearly.
The fresh air and wind in your face is a great reality check sometimes!
What do you like to do to keep a positive mindset? Comment below!