noun: mindset; plural noun: mindsets; noun: mind-set; plural noun: mind-sets
the established set of attitudes held by someone. (Google Knowledge graph)
Mindset and Happiness
All of that is fine, but how can one change a mindset?
We could talk until we are blue in the face about the importance of the mindset when it comes to feeding our happiness and well-being, but without some sort of concrete example it all starts to feel like some horribly worded math problem involving trains going different speeds in opposite directions = what are you supposed to do with all of this information?
To be absolutely clear, these are methods I use personally to bolster my mindset and should only be seen as personal stories – I am not a mental health professional and I am not offering advice, only what has worked for me in the past.
Our emotional reactions can often produce real physical reactions in our bodies: when we are afraid our hearts race and we begin to sweat… which is what happens when you get excited. If our bodies aren’t accustomed to caffeine, then unknowingly drinking a caffeinated coffee can produce excitement and rushed feeling – if we don’t realize that it’s the caffeine doing it, we might interpret the physical feelings as being caused by the date we are meeting for coffee: then a misinterpreted caffeine rush is mistaken for feelings of warmth and love.
If we slow our thoughts and focus on where we are and what we are doing we can better pay attention to the signals our bodies, we can choose how we interpret those physical sensations – why not make them about the happier interpretation?
Every once in awhile, there will be a day where I just can’t seem to wake up. A few years ago, this feeling would absolutely ruin my day from the get go. Telling myself from moment one that there was no way I was going to make it through the day. I ask myself with resentment: why didn’t you go to bed earlier? Once this parade of negativity begins, halting it upon it’s predetermined route becomes an epic feat – one that I’ve rarely been able to accomplish.
Over time, I began to slowly change my mindset about other things in my life: my marriage, my family, my friends, my job situation and tried to force myself to shine a positive light on these things and take them in illuminated instead of darkly accepting some grim reality I had constructed around myself. Soon, another one of those impossibly tired days reared it’s ugly head again, but something felt different – I wasn’t upset that I was tired; instead my mind almost automatically told me I was so much tired, I was just feeling really relaxed and mellow.
As silly as that sounds, it absolutely worked. Instead of wishing for the bed and repeating to myself how tired I was, I sat back, smiled and enjoyed the wonderful feeling of relaxing both body and mind.
How have YOU changed your mindset in the past? Have you tried any of these methods? Please comment and let us know what works for YOU! The happiness brought about by a positive mindset is something that you are in control of – so take back the wheel!
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Sources: http://agocluytens.com/mindset-matters/ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flow_%28psychology%29 https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/the-happiness-project/201301/almost-any-types-acts-kindness-boost-happiness