You have probably heard this phrase numerous times before; ‘you should be more positive’, or ‘don’t be so negative. Though these phrases are somewhat cliche, they still hold, as keeping a strong mental attitude will help you change your life for the better.

Before we go any further, I want to first talk about the difficulties we all face in life. As you are well aware, life is full of trials and tribulations. As you keep working towards achieving your goals, you will encounter many obstacles, such as many obstacles. This is OK, though, because the right mental attitude opens your view to seeing those obstacles in a new light.

However, there is a catch to this; you must maintain a positive state of mind. I know this is easier said than done. Nevertheless, in those moments of weakness, when you are about to give up on the negativity, you must realize that the only way is forward. Whether that ‘forward’ is going to change your life the way you want it is up to you

A Strong mental attitude will change your life

Hence the importance of having a good mental attitude. Realizing that no matter what you do in life, you will always encounter an obstacle, but obstacles become easy to overcome when you have a positive state of mind. You will regard them as opportunities to better yourself.

To do this, I want you to treat each thought as an offering to either accept or reject. If it is a negative thought, reject it. If it is a positive thought, accept it. So, does this mean that we have to constantly monitor our thoughts and reject any negativity the mind throws at us? The answer is Yes, and this is the very habit you must nurture to change your life positively.

I know it seems like a very daunting task; however, just like anything else in life, with practice, this habit will become automatic. Furthermore, once you start creating the habit of monitoring your thoughts, it will become much easier to have a positive mental attitude. Usually, this process takes at least three months, though it is normal if it takes longer.

Arnold Schwarzenegger

An unexpected example showing this state of mind can be found in the story of Arnold Schwarzenegger, who, believe it or not, was ridiculed when he began acting, and nobody ever thought he could become a famous actor. Whether you like the man or not, one has to concede that Arnold faced many obstacles in his life. Despite that, he became successful as an actor and even ended up becoming the governor of California.

Now let me ask you, would you have given up if you were in Arnie’s position before he was famous? Would you have quit after facing so many discouraging situations? To put it in his own words, “strength does not come from winning. Your struggles develop your strengths. When you go through hardships and decide not to surrender, that is a strength”. Moreover, this kind of thinking seeks the positive even in the worst of situations, thereby giving you the momentum to push through with a positive state of mind while not getting consumed by the negativity.

Become an actor, not a reactor

By doing the exercise, I gave you of rejecting and accepting your thoughts; you will slowly start to become an actor in your life and not a reactor. What I mean by that is that most people react to life instead of acting upon it. Everything they do is a reaction to something instead of acting towards something.

This is because they are not grounded and have not found their balance. To be grounded is to be balanced; thus, being able to act, not react. Once you’re grounded, it is much easier to monitor any negative thoughts you get. You will easily handle any negative situation as you continue to change your life (acting) positively. At the same time, those who do not have the right mental attitude will keep on wandering through life, thinking about why everything goes wrong, as they always seem to be the victim of something (reacting to life).

So, even though phrases such as “don’t be so negative” or ” you gotta be more positive” might sound a little bit cliche. They do hold profound truths that can positively change your life.

The Neuroscience of Positivity

Neuroscience reveals that positivity isn’t just a state of mind; it’s a physical state of your brain. When you engage in positive thinking, your brain’s neural pathways light up, reinforcing patterns that promote well-being. Neuroplasticity, the brain’s ability to reorganize itself by forming new neural connections, plays a crucial role. By consistently practising positive thoughts, you can rewire your brain to default to optimism.

A Strong Mental Attitude: Rewiring Thought Patterns

Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT) is a potent tool in the arsenal against negativity. It works by identifying and challenging negative thought patterns and replacing them with positive ones. This helps develop a strong mental attitude.   CBT has a robust evidence base, with studies demonstrating its efficacy in improving mood and reducing anxiety. Aaron T. Beck, the pioneer of CBT, once said, “The beliefs we have… shape our experiences.” This encapsulates the essence of CBT—alter your beliefs, and you transform your life.

Exercises for a Strong Mental Attitude

To build mental strength, engage in exercises that promote positivity. Mindfulness meditation, gratitude journaling, and positive affirmations can all contribute to a more optimistic mindset.

1. Mindfulness Meditation: The Anchor of Awareness

Mindfulness meditation teaches you to observe your thoughts without judgment, anchoring you in the present moment. This practice can reduce stress and foster a sense of inner peace.

2. Gratitude Journaling: Counting Blessings

Gratitude journaling involves writing down things you’re thankful for each day. This simple act can shift your focus from what’s lacking to what’s abundant in your life.

3. Positive Affirmations: Words of Power

Affirmations are positive statements that can help you to challenge and overcome self-sabotaging thoughts. Repeating these can forge new, empowering beliefs.

The Impact of Diet and Exercise

Don’t overlook the role of diet and exercise in cultivating a positive mindset. Nutrient-rich foods and regular physical activity can improve brain function and mood. Emerging research highlights the brain-gut connection, suggesting that a healthy gut microbiome can influence your mental state. Foods rich in probiotics, like yoghurt and kefir, can be beneficial.

The Role of Sleep in Mental Attitude

Adequate sleep is non-negotiable for a positive mental attitude. It’s during sleep that your brain processes emotions and consolidates memories. Prioritize sleep to ensure your mind is primed for positivity.

Social Connections: The Joy of Belonging

Humans are social creatures, and strong relationships are foundational to a positive mindset. Engage with your community, nurture friendships, and seek meaningful connections.

Overcoming Obstacles with Positivity

Life will inevitably present challenges, but a positive mental attitude equips you to face them head-on. Embrace setbacks as opportunities for growth.