It’s a funny little thing, being positive. People with positive attitude have the best outlook on life no matter what the situation they’re in. We all know some of these people. I can think of one right know and I can’t think of a single moment I’ve seen them upset, always smile on their face. I like to think myself as some-what positive but I wish I could be like them. However, it must be the Finnish in me that stops me from achieving that kind of outlook, yet. It’s a work in progress and I am getting better. I think.
Compare that to the cynical and negative folks who see the bad in every situation, even in great ones. Each of us knows some of these people. They’re the ones who’s company makes you feel like you have a pair of shoes on made out of lead. Again, I can think of one right know. Even thinking about them makes me feel lethargic. These are the folks you do not want to hangout with, ever.
So, when you focus on the positive you’ll be happier and more enthusiastic about life in general and others around you will feel the same. This doesn’t mean that you always need to be super happy, praising joy to the world, blasting in eternal sunshine while riding unicorns farting rainbows.
Being positive doesn’t mean filling up your social media feed with slogans and motivational quotes. Being positive is the quiet voice in your head that urges you to find a ray of light in situations that don’t seem very bright. Being positive urges you to not take everything so seriously.
Maybe you just injured your shoulder and have to lay off the training for a while. Instead of sinking into a bucket filled with the good ‘ol “poor me”, be grateful that your life doesn’t depend on hunting or carrying water on your shoulders for great distances. Or for carrying anything for that matter. Be grateful that you live in a civilized society and you can get food by walking into supermarket or drink a glass of water by opening a tap. Heck, you can even get food delivered to your door with a touch of a button. And a credit card. We are privileged to have these things in our lives.
If the weight on the scale is not dropping or the weight on the bar is not increasing, don’t get discouraged. Instead of feeling miserable focus on the positive by looking what you’ve learned so far. Be grateful of what you can learn from the situation that you are in. Every obstacle becomes a learning curve and will get you to know your body and mind better. The better you know yourself the stronger you will be. In the end, you will appreciate the results more compared to if you had been given them on a silver platter. You put sweat and tears into achieving your goals. You are not going to revert back to the old you and let it all drain away. It is more likely that you will keep your results for a long-term instead of becoming another casualty of 12-week transformations.
When you are stuck and feel as if you’ve tried every possible option don’t let the negativity take over. Give up now and you’ll never know how close to the breakthrough you were. Maybe it was just around the next corner. But you’ll never know, you gave up. Be grateful that the more solutions you try the more you know what doesn’t work. Therefore you must be getting closer to what works for you, that one thing or things that will get you unstuck.
What I have been doing lately is a gratitude journal. Every night before going to bed I write couple of things down that were really good about today. It can be as simple as ‘had the best coffee in the morning’ to something more philosophical such as reflecting what is really awesome about the relationships that I have with my wife, family and friends. And our cats. Doing this will ensure that I will go to bed with positive thoughts instead of being pissed off to the world that I had to do the dishes.
Each day reflect back on what went well today regarding your training goals. Then ask yourself what did you learn today regarding your health and fitness. You’ll notice that there will be a learning in every single day.
I always emphasize that any progress is good. No matter how small, you are still moving into the right direction. Learn to appreciate even the smallest wins because it means that you are doing the right things. And if you want better results, stay positive and do more of those things that give you small wins. As Dan and Chip Heath wrote in Switch: focus on your bright spots instead of everything that isn’t working. Positive over negative.
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