Is the glass half full or half empty?

* This post is also available in: esEspañol (Spanish)

Are you an optimistic person or do you tend to see life in a pessimistic way?
Is the glass half empty or half full? The definition of an optimist is “someone who is generally hopeful or who tends to expect the best possible outcome”. But are optimists naive, ingenuous or even dreamers? Life is filled with good and bad moments, challenges, difficulties and decisions and optimists tend to tackle these situations with a positive attitude. They look for the light at the end of the tunnel in difficult times.

A pessimist usually assumes the worst and sees mostly the negative aspects of a situation. Living this way can cause you to miss opportunities in life, neglect problems that need to be solved, and make it difficult to improve your quality of life. Pessimism breeds indecision and frustration. In fact, studies show that pessimism can affect your health and increase your susceptibility to serious illnesses. If you’ve always had a pessimistic view on life, it can be difficult to shift your focus, but it is possible to change. Here is a list of tips on how to start:

1. Remember that life is short– any time spent being negative leaves you with less time to enjoy what life has to offer you. Time is a limited resource.
2. Take action– stop believing that the world is against you or that you have bad luck. You can make changes to improve your own life if you really want to.
3. Smile– Did you know that smiling triggers brain activity and makes you feel happy? The more times you smile and laugh every day, the better you will feel.
4. Use positive affirmations– you can write notes to yourself on a notebook or somewhere in your home to remind yourself of messages like “Anything is possible”, “ I am the master of my own life” “My circumstances do not create me, I create my circumstances”.
5. Try to worry less about the past or the future, today is a gift- the more energy you put into now, the more fun you will have in life.
6. Breathe-when you have a stressful moment take a few deep breaths and you will feel your body relax and your mind become more positive.
7. Do exercise– physical exercise is another way to release tension and negative thoughts and makes you feel more in control of your life.
8. Enjoy the small things in life– a good cup of coffee, spending time with friends, playing with a small child-remind yourself of all the positive things about life and that you are lucky to be alive

* This post is also available in: esEspañol (Spanish)

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