The power of positivity. This morning, I was listening to Hal Elrod’s Achieve Your Goals podcast where Jon Berghoff was interviewing one Robyn Stratton-Berkessel on the Words that Create our World.
Robyn calls herself a Positivity-Strategist. She works with people essentially to elevate themselves such that they can be happier individuals, and produce better results. In turn each of these individuals lifts their world, including their work, family and anyone with whom they come in contact.
I think the word “Positivity” has developed somewhat of a bad rep in the few years, through no fault of its own. As I mentioned in a number of previous blog posts, including Simple Tools to Turn Your Bad Day into Christmas Morning, I’m inherently a positive person. I prefer to see the good in people, rather than the bad. I believe that ultimately the core of humanity wants to make their community a better place for everyone. No one is born to make anyone’s life miserable. They move along through life each with their own set of beliefs that they think would make the world a good place. These beliefs are different within each of us. Sometimes they conflict, and that, in my opinion is the cause of worldly conflict.
What do you Think About the Glass?
Remember the old ‘glass half empty or full’ thing? Are you a ‘glass half empty,’ or a ‘glass half full’ type of person? I am definitely a glass half full type person. In fact, I’ll up the ante and say that the glass is not only half full. But if ever we need more, all we need to do is to fill it all the way up.
That is also under the assumption that the contents of the glass is we wanted in the first place. Does the glass serve you in being half full? The underlying assumption is yes, if we want a drink. Therefore having a glass half-full (of your desired beverage) is good. However, if for whatever reason the glass was filled with urine, for example, then having the glass half full does not at all meet your needs. In fact, it would be be pretty disgusting. But merely complaining about it still leaves you with half a glass of pee. It’s the next action that matters. Simply pour it into the toilet, wash your hands and move on.
Words Create Worlds
Robyn brought up that your words create your world. Your words create your reality. Absolutely true. People often poke fun at me because I’m so positive. I honestly don’t know what they’re thinking. For some reason, positivity often gets associated with ignorance and naiveté. I know I’ve been called that on many an occasion. They look at me and think that I haven’t seen enough of the world to know of its trials and tribulations. They figure I still think it’s a happy place full of sunshine and rainbows. (It is, by the way)
People often tell me how they’re not pessimistic, they’re realistic. The underlying message is, of course, that they equate being negative and pessimistic with being real. Hey, who am I to refute that? They’re absolutely right as well. We are all realists. But being a realist is completely independent to whether or not you’re optimistic or pessimistic. Whether you see the positivity, or the negativity in the world around you, that is your world. That is your reality. So, joke’s on you. Here’s the real deal: Your words create your world. Whether you create positivity or negativity in your world, it’s all on you… for you.
The good news is that optimism can be learned. None of us are doomed with our current mindset forever. Here are a few simple things that we can do to start creating a world of possibility and positivity immediately.
Simple Ways to Bring Positivity into your Life Today
1. Protect your Bubble; Cut out the Crap
I’ve mentioned about this before. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve become much more choosy with whom I spend my time. I’ve got limited time! We all do. Who wants to waste it with people who don’t align with our beliefs? Ain’t no one got time for that. (insert auto-tune here) You are the average of the 5 people with whom you spend the most time . So engineer your day such that you spend time with quality people! Cut out the ones who aren’t. I’m ruthless about this. Sorry, it’s true. If you don’t share my values and beliefs, you don’t make the cut. I don’t want to have to sell anyone on my personal values. Screw that. You go about your own life. I’ll go about mine.
Your bubble is everything that comes in contact with your 5 senses, primarily your eyes and ears. What you see, listen to, and interact with shape your bubble. So start listening to audio books that are nutritious for your mind. Explore podcasts where you can enter the conversation of mental giants. Here are some of my favourites:
2. Prime Your Mind
My friend Cat Chan posted this on Facebook a couple weeks ago. First, I’m so proud of her for adding a bit of meditation to her life. I’m a huge proponent of affording your mind some daily alone time. Call it what you will, meditation, prayer, thinking time… What Tony Robbins illustrates is super simple, fast and powerful:
Here is a summary of the audio, courtesy of Project Life Mastery :
Phase 1 – Breathing
1. Get in a comfortable, seated, position. Close your eyes.
2. With your arms raised above your head, breathe deeply through your nose.
3. Lower your arms and blow out through your nose as your arms are coming down.
4. Repeat for 30 breaths.
5. Rest for 10 seconds. Feel your body and any sensations.
6. Repeat the set for 3 times.
Phase 2 – Gratitude
1.Put your hands on your heart and feel it beating.
2.Breathe in and feel the blood rushing through your body.
3.Think of 3 moments or people that you can feel deeply grateful for. Feel what you felt and see what you saw, make it real.
Phase 3 – Goal setting
Focus on three important goals that you have for the next day, month or year. He calls it Three to thrive.
This is very close to my own daily meditation, except I spend more time focusing on gratitude, and I visualize and feel my milestone goals. I then end off with how I want my day to unfold. Mine lasts about 20 minutes.
3. Celebrate Success
My husband recently smashed a personal goal of his. I am super proud of him for doing so! This month has been a month of ‘firsts’ for us. We still have a lot to cover in the long run for what we want to achieve in each of the areas of our life. It’s a journey. The saddest thing is to deprive yourself of basking in the win, in favour of moving forward to the next step. The problem with this, is that there is always a next step.
Stop! Look back from where you came. As Dan Sullivan (The Strategic Coach) says “Measure how far you’ve come from where you started.” Only then can you see accomplishment. It’s a huge mistake to measure the gap to your goal. It’s a mistake because it’s like trying to measure how far you are from the horizon. The problem with the horizon is that it’s always moving. You never reach it. If you’re like me, it actually takes conscious effort to stop and celebrate your wins. But it is critically important, if you want to stay in the game.
4. Feed your Body
I love junk food. And I have no self-control when it comes salty crunchy munchies. It’s embarrassing. I’m a fitness instructor. People look to me as a role model for health, nutrition and physique. And here I am stuffing my face with Cheetos every chance I get. Lawrence actually had to hide the bag of Cheetos from me one week. But I found it. In the dog drawer. It’s no longer there anymore. Guilty pleasures aside, I feel the lack of nutrition in my body afterward. I feel weak. I get tired. I feel lethargic. I have self-doubt. When you feed your body wholesome foods and plenty of water, it’s amazing the difference in your body when you feed it quality fuel. You’re alert. You’re energetic. You’re on it. You just become a happier person all around. So why make it harder on yourself?
No one is positive 100% of the time. Not me, not even Tony Robbins. You’d be fooling yourself if you did. Just yesterday, for example, I was downright bitchy. It was hard to contain within myself. I’m going to chock it up to hormones. Here’s the thing. If you imagine a glass of muddy water, the more clean water you pour into it, the more you dilute the muddy stuff. Eventually, all of the mud is diluted out and you’re left with glass of clean, pure aqua. Completely full. Overflowing even. So embrace your positivity!