Dwelling on the negative simply contributes to its power. ~ Shirley MacLaine
Staying inspired requires doing one’s best and avoiding negativity. When our focal point is unhappy things, they only seem to multiply squeezing out inspiration. Finding or unearthing the good in a situation or circumstance takes work and is an art form.
Negativity surfaces in many forms. Sometimes people we are close to see every inconvenience as a crisis. At times trying to share inspiration and joy with someone results with them wanting to shut you down and then their proceeding to complain about life. Similarly, you may endeavor to look at the world with optimism only to find stories of doom and gloom reflected back. What can you do to counteract negativity without becoming apathetic or seeming arrogant?
7 Ways to Stay Inspired
Make Pretend – Do you remember this childhood gem? Just act “as if”. Continue to BE the person YOU want to be despite everything happening around you. Even if things might not seem great at the moment, the best thing to remember is life is good. Or think of it as “fake it, ‘til you make it.”
Be Sympathetic – When presented with complaints, say something like, “I’m sorry you are so unhappy. Is there anything I can do to help?” Make sure you really mean this; someone might take you up on your offer! Simply validating a person’s mood or concern will often dispel their negativity. That in and of itself would be inspiring.
Practice patience and tolerance – Recall a time when you felt stuck and there was no way out. Somehow you made it to the other side. The person you are today, your personality and attitude were shaped by your life experiences. Express gratitude for the growth you have made and the inspiration you found. Wish that same thing on others in your life.
Find a “GO TO” Affirmation – Some people call this a “mantra.” Proactively choose a short phrase to repeat to yourself during time of stress and high volatility. For example, “I choose to enjoy my life.” or “I focus only on good things.”
Avoid Negativity When Possible – Sometimes the negativity comes from our families, close friends, or co-workers. It is not always possible to turn away from those stuck in negativity. However, we may need to make some difficult choices. Perhaps ending friendships disrespectful to you. Avoiding violent or negative television or music. Bypassing social circles that center on gossip or complaints. Associating with these can make inspiration difficult. By removing or eliminating those will lighten your load, draw you to the positive, and attract more like-minded people into your life.
Teach by Example – The most effective way to help others find inspiration is finding it first for ourselves. When others see you making changes, feeling good, treating others well; they will start asking questions. Example is the best teacher.
Just Breathe – It’s not always possible to sidestep a negative situation. If you are in the midst and cannot get out of it, pause a moment, and take a deep, long, slow breath. Close your eyes and clear your mind for a few seconds. This will help calm and refocus yourself.
Negativity doesn’t get us to where we want to be or help us reach our goals. Seek out tools and ways to conquer negativity, robbing its power over our lives. With a focus toward the positive and eliminating the negative, stay strong and focused … this will keep us inspired and will enable us to pursue and reach our goals.
Let positivity be a prevalent guiding force in our lives.